Breakfast: The Most Important Meal of the Day » Nursing Jobs Blog – Nurses Insights at Nursing Jobs.org

Breakfast: The Most Important Meal of the Day

October 14th, 2015  |  The Blog

Everyone’s mother always said it and now a study has been done to prove the importance of it…eating breakfast is important. There are many studies investigating what affect eating breakfast has on a person’s general health. One study in particular, done by the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH), was a long-term look at almost 27, 000 men, ages 45 to 82 years old, over a 16-year span of time.

The Effects of Skipping Breakfast

Skipping breakfast can have one or more of the following effects on a person, when compared to a person who does eat breakfast, according to the recent study:

  • Higher risk of heart attack
  • Higher risk of fatal coronary heart disease
  • Tendency towards obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes

People who skip breakfast also crave and tend to eat high calorie, more appealing snacks later in the day, especially the late morning hours. Hence, they over eat and tend to lean towards obesity.

The Results

At the outset of the study, no one had been diagnosed heart disease or cancer. At the end of the 16 year study, 1,572 of the male study participants experienced non-fatal heart attacks or died of coronary artery disease.

Men who admitted not eating breakfast reported a 27% higher risk of heart attack or death from coronary artery disease than those who regularly ate breakfast.

Interestingly, another finding of the study reports that eating late at night is also not a healthy life choice. Those who eat late at night have a 55% higher risk of developing coronary artery disease than those who do not eat late at night.

A Good Breakfast

Eating a nutritious breakfast is important to keep a person healthy and provide the energy needed to make it through the day.

Here are some guidelines to eating a healthy breakfast:

  • Eat a healthy balance of protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals
  • Eat a filling breakfast to ward off high calorie temptations later in the morning
  • Eat cereal, hot or cold, with some healthy add-ins like nuts, chopped fruit and/or steel-cut oatmeal
  • Bananas are a healthy breakfast fruit
  • Try whole grain toast with a glass of low fat milk

The Advice

The advice derived from this eating study is quite simple. It is this: do not skip breakfast. Why? Because eating a healthy breakfast is key factor in lowering a person’s risk of having a heart attack.

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