The King, the Prince and the Pauper
Remember that old tail?
Eat Breakfast like a King;
Lunch like a Prince;
and Dinner like a Pauper
This is a saying that has been around for some time now yet some people do not heed to the practice and wonder why they are hungry around 10/11am; why they seem to loose energy around 4pm and why they are so hungry when they get home from work and cannot wait until they sit down with a full dinner plate. Most importantly, they wonder why they haven’t lost any weight.
Many prescribe the formula “number of calories burnt (exercise) must be higher than intake of calories (food) for weight loss”. This may ring true in theory but what about the time of day that you intake the calories? Does that make a difference?
A study in Obesity compared a high calorie breakfast to a high calorie dinner. Over a 12 week period, the study split a group of 50 overweight women – one group working on the Breakfast like a King theory and the other group enjoying dinner as their main meal of the day. Each group worked with 1400 calories: 500 allocated to lunch and depending on which group your main meal was 700 calories, the balance with the ‘lighter’ meal.
Although both groups lost weight, the Breakfast Kings (or shall we call them Queens in this case!?) lost close to 9kgs while the women who had a big dinner lost under 4kgs. The Breakfast Queens also lost twice as much around their waist in terms of measurements.
Now I’m not a calorie counter, never have been and I’m not afraid to admit it. Reason is for another day, but I truly believe Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Your body needs fuel to function - that fuel is food. If you only have a glass of juice, or cup of coffee, maybe a piece of toast….how long do you think it will be until you are hungry again and you start nibbling on something that may not be a healthy choice?
A big breakfast fuels your body but also fills you up so come 11am, a little snack may be all you need (piece of fruit)….if anything. Then lunchtime comes around to give you a boost of energy to finish the day....have a well balance meal but not too heavy. An afternoon snack of some nuts and/dried fruit (no more than ½ cup) will carry your body onto dinner. During the day you have been well fed with a hearty breakfast, an energy boosting lunch therefore you should not require another full meal for dinner but a lighter option (salad, soup or green smoothie).
In additional to this Obesity study, the large breakfast eaters had significantly lower levels of insulin and glucose plus fat in their blood. What does that mean? It may help in lowering the risk of diabetes and heart disease. Now that HAS to be a bonus right!?
So what now?
1. Check with your medical practitioner if there would be any complications dining like this.
2. Weigh yourself.
3. Measure you waistline (hips and mid-section).
4. Try this formula for 2-3 weeks (minimum).
5. Weigh and Measure yourself at the end and compare results. Do note if trailing for 2-3 weeks, a big change may not be evident. A longer period will see more comparable results.
~ If going out to dinner, have a smaller lunch.
~ If planning on drinking alcohol, choose fish or low fat meats at meals to avoid excess fat storage. Omega 3 oils block the fat storage mechanism. Carbs should also be avoided when drinking – ‘low-carb’ drinks on the market ring any bells? There is a reason why this product has surfaced (apart from marketing reasons).
I also like to have a glass of water as soon as I get up in the morning. This is the oil in my body machine that will get the blood flowing, the bowels active, the brain woken from its slumber and the muscle fibres ready for the day. I prepare breakfast and get changed before I sit down and eat. This takes about 20-30mins which gives my body time to wake from the rest-zone. It’s also not a bad idea to have a glass of water 30 minutes before every meal. Water gives you the feeling of being full and hydrated therefore you do not need to eat as much (remember calorie intake and outtake).
Before I go, I know what some of you may be thinking: ”I don’t have time to prepare a big breakfast in the morning between training with TJ Fit, getting the children ready for school and myself ready for the day ahead”. Consider this, if you are not preparing a full dinner meal, why not pre-prepare as much as possible the night before so breakfast won’t take up all your time in the morning? Even if it’s putting everything on the bench top ready to be put together, or soaking nuts overnight (to activate them), or setting the table. Plan ahead my friends, plan ahead.
Let me know how your King-like eating habit has made a difference to your scales and energy levels.
Stay active and dine on seasonal produce Your Majesty