Will eating breakfast help me lose weight?

Will eating breakfast help me lose weight?

Yes! Eat breakfast to lose weight.

More than 2,300 adults who have lost an average of 70 pounds and kept it off for six years eat breakfast daily.

This statistic comes from 2,959 members of the National Weight Control Registry (NWCR):

  • 78% of the members eat breakfast seven days a week.
  • 90% of the members eat breakfast at least four days a week.
  • Only 4% of the members never eat breakfast.

What do they eat for breakfast?

Cereal (hot or cold) and fruit is the most common breakfast among NWCR members.

Common breakfast excuses and solutions

Three common reasons people give for not eating breakfast are: (1) not having time, (2) not feeling hungry in the morning, or (3) wanting to save calories to lose weight.

1. I don’t have time for breakfast.

Solution: Eat something simple that doesn’t require cooking. For example, eat a banana and yogurt. Breakfast doesn’t have to be a time-consuming sit-down meal.

2. I’m not hungry for breakfast.

Solution: Start with something small like a piece of fruit. Pretty soon, you’ll probably notice you start to feel hungry without it.

3. I want to cut calories to lose weight.

Solution: Eat breakfast! Skipping breakfast doesn’t mean you’ll cut calories or lose weight:

  • Skipping breakfast doesn’t mean you’ll save calories. Members who ate breakfast actually ended up consuming roughly the same number of calories during the day as those who didn’t.
  • Skipping breakfast doesn’t mean you’ll lose weight. As cited above, 78% of members who lost weight and kept if off ate breakfast daily.

Benefits of eating breakfast.

There are many reasons to eat breakfast including the fact that it might give you more energy for exercise.

Members of the NWCR who ate breakfast at least 4 days a week also got more exercise. They burned roughly 265 more calories per day than those who didn’t eat breakfast as often!

Wyatt HR, Grunwald GK, Mosca CL, Klem ML, Wing RR, Hill JO. Long-term weight loss and breakfast in subjects in the National Weight Control Registry. Obesity Research 2002 Feb;10(2):78-82.

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Stephanie Averkamp

About the Author was created by Stephanie Averkamp, a recognized health and fitness professional and sole-author of the content on this website. Stephanie's approach to weight loss emphasizes making small, realistic, and permanent lifestyle changes. Read more...

Stephanie Averkamp

Our Approach: Short-term solutions (like dieting) are unrealistic and ineffective because at some point they end. As soon as a diet or program ends, so do the results. Permanent weight loss is a journey; it's not a race or competition and there is no finish line. Read more...