Take your morning run on an empty stomach.
Perhaps the greatest debate surrounding breakfast involves the theory that working out on an empty stomach provides a competitive edge in fat burning. Here’s why: There’s a hierarchy in how the body finds energy for everyday tasks. Glucose, obtained by carbohydrates is the most easily absorbed, and readily available fuel, and takes on center stage when you need energy of any kind. Once glucose (and glycogen) is depleted, the body will search for the next source ready to provide fuel — and that’s fat. Thus, the theory goes that when working out on an empty stomach, the body has to burn fat first due to a lack of available fuel from glucose.
A 2017 study found that exercising in a fasting state may in fact burn more fat. Other studies have showed similar results, including one study that demonstrated a 20 percent increase in fat burning potential when participants exercised without breakfast beforehand. Earlier studies however have refuted the theory that a workout is better when the stomach is empty.
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More research is needed to determine the final say on this issue. In the meantime, I tell my patients to do what feels right. If working out seems near impossible without anything in your stomach in the morning, then you may want to have something small, like half of a banana and natural peanut butter.
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A new study indicated that individuals’ weight-loss success was not necessarily linked to whether their diet was low-carb, low-fat, or even low-calorie but rather whether the individual ate a whole foods, minimal sugar diet. This is perhaps the first approach you should be taking when it comes to breakfast: Eat food, not manufactured calories. That means you should start by avoiding foods with added colors and flavors. Steer clear of foods that have massive amounts of added sugar or reach you via your car window.
Instead, aim for at least 15 grams of protein or more by consuming plain yogurt, eggs, zucchini muffins, quiche cups or a protein smoothie. Make your carbohydrate options complex ones, such as steel-cut oatmeal with mixed nuts and cinnamon or whole-grain sprouted bread with avocado or nut butter and above all, eat breakfast like a king, and decrease meal size as the day progresses.
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