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Breakfast Blunders, by Kate Hutchinson

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We’ve heard it all before. First, the lecture came from our parents, then we had it from our teachers and now it appears that academics are getting in on the act, too. You know what they say, ‘mothers know best’ and as much as it pains me to say it, they might just be right.

It’s been a hotly debated topic in the world of food, but recent, research published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology has found that skipping our morning meal may be linked to poorer cardiovascular health. Scientists are suggesting that breakfast is, in fact, the most important meal of the day – but just how true is it?

No doubt we’ve all been there (I know I certainly have) – we’d rather have that extra five minutes in bed or we’re so focused on finishing a piece of work then before we know it, the whole morning has passed by.

However, the study suggests that those who miss their morning meal compared to those who enjoy a hearty breakfast, are at a greater risk of developing stages of atherosclerosis earlier in life. In other words, suffer from a build-up of fat in their arteries.

Though it appears that it’s not actually skipping breakfast that’s the problem but more what it causes us to eat after, it indicates more about our lifestyle than anything else. Skipping breakfast disrupts our internal body clock, causing us to eat more calories at unusual times of the day. We turn to things such as snacks or excessive eating around lunchtime to counter-act the meal missed earlier that day. But what if we were to indulge in a full English, seven days a week – would that really be better for us than having nothing at all? It’s safe to say I’m dubious, but, if in the interest of science it means I need to treat myself to some hearty breakfasts, I’m all for it.

So, next time you’re too tired to drag yourself out of bed that five minutes earlier in the morning, just stop and think, because it seems our parents might have been right all along – breakfast truly is the key meal of the day.


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