Ask the RD: What’s the Big Deal with Breakfast?

Q: I’ve heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and sometimes I skip breakfast.  Why is it so important?

A: Absolutely – breakfast is important to start your day off right! There are 3 main reasons why it’s especially important for people with diabetes to make sure to eat breakfast everyday:

  • Breakfast breaks the ‘food fast’ you had while you were sleeping. During the night, your body does not receive a source of energy from food. Therefore, the liver works as a safety mechanism to provide the body with sugar, making sure you don’t go too low. For people living with diabetes, we often refer to the liver as being “leaky” as it can release a little more sugar than you need, leading to higher fasting sugars.  Eating breakfast when you wake up helps keep your blood sugars stable.
  • By skipping breakfast, you are not giving your body and brain the energy it needs. Food is fuel and regular meals including starting with breakfast, help you to manage your blood sugars and energy levels throughout the day.
  • Lastly, breakfast is the meal that sets you up for the rest of your day. By not eating in the morning you can feel hungrier throughout the day, especially at lunch. Going into meals very hungry can lead to eating more than we need. Therefore, having breakfast can help ensure sensible portion sizes for meals and snacks consumed for the remainder of the day.

 

Assistance provided by Jessica Simons, dietetic intern

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