Eat a Doughnut For Breakfast, Lose Weight

1x1.trans Eat a Doughnut For Breakfast, Lose WeightWhen it comes to diets, even within the scientific research community, there’s no shortage of radically different kinds.

In one recent study, researchers from Tel Aviv University claim eating sweets at breakfast can actually help you lose weight and keep it off for extended periods.

The study involved 200 obese adults who were randomly assigned to eat one of two low-calorie diets. Although both diets had the same number of daily calories, one included a large breakfast with a sweet treat such as a doughnut while the other included a larger meal later in the day.

The researchers claimed those who consumed the breakfast with a sweet treat were more successful at sticking to their diets than those who had a regular breakfast with a larger meal later in the day.

“They found that halfway through the eight-month study, participants in both groups lost an average of 33 pounds per person, but in the last four months of the study, the small-breakfast group regained an average of 22 pounds while the participants who ate the dessert with breakfast went on to lose another 15 pounds each.”

Lead author Dr Daniel Jakubowicz said the goal of a weight loss diet should be not only weight reduction but also reduction of hunger and cravings, thus helping prevent weight regain.

1x1.trans Eat a Doughnut For Breakfast, Lose WeightThose who ate the dessert with breakfast reported feeling less hunger and fewer cravings compared with the other group. Blood tests also revealed levels of a “hunger hormone” dropped by 45 per cent in the dessert group compared to 30 per cent in the other group.

Dr Jakubowicz concluded the results from the dessert with breakfast diet was due to meal timing and composition, and said the diet’s high protein content reduced hunger.

“The combination with carbohydrates left the participant feeling full, while the dessert kept sweet and fat cravings under control.”

In another study funded by the National Institutes of Health, researchers found dieters trying to maintain their weight loss burned significantly more calories eating a low-carb diet rather than eating a low-fat diet.

In the study, after their weight had stabilized, each study participant followed one of three different diets for four weeks:

1) A low-fat diet which was about 20% of calories from fat and emphasized whole-grain products and fruits and vegetables.

2) A low-carb diet, similar to the Atkins diet, with only 10% of calories from carbohydrates. It emphasized fish, chicken, beef, eggs, cheese, some vegetables and fruits while eliminating foods such as breads, pasta, potatoes and starchy vegetables.

3) A low-glycemic index diet, similar to a Mediterranean diet, made up of vegetables, fruit, beans, healthy fats (olive oil, nuts) and mostly healthy grains (old-fashioned oats, brown rice). These foods digest more slowly, helping to keep blood sugar and hormones stable after the meal.

Researchers concluded participants burned about 300 calories more a day on a low-carb diet than they did on a low-fat diet.

“That’s the amount you’d burn off in an hour of moderate intensity physical activity without lifting a finger,” says senior author David Ludwig, director of the New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Ludwig added that participants burned 150 calories more on the low-glycemic index diet than the low-fat diet.

“We think the low-carb and low-glycemic index diets, by not causing the surge and crash in blood sugar, don’t trigger the starvation response. When the body thinks it’s starving, it turns down metabolism to conserve energy,” he says.

Ludwig warned that over the long term the low-carb diet may be hard for many people to follow.

“If you’re trying to lose weight, you can get a jump start with a low-carb diet, but over the long term, a low-glycemic index diet may be better than severely restricting carbohydrates.”

“In the meantime, if you want to lose weight, eat less.”

The bottom line is if you want to lose weight, eat less. Marion Nestle, a nutrition professor at New York University, argues that there’s little difference in weight loss and maintenance between one kind of diet and another.

Spence Cooper
Inquisitive foodie with a professional investigative background and strong belief in the organic farm to table movement. Author of Bad Seeds: A FriendsEAT Guide to GMO's. Buy Now!
Spence Cooper