The Breakfast Question
Breakfast first or exercise first? . . . the ultimate chicken-or-the egg question.
Breakfast is the first meal of the day. It quite literally means to “break your fast” after consuming your last meal of the previous day and after an evening of sleep. During this time, blood sugar levels fall, resulting in lowered levels of insulin — the hormone that regulates blood sugar.
When you exercise before breakfast, you’re expending calories while insulin levels are lower. A new study from researchers at the University of Bath and the University of Birmingham in the U.K. have shown that participants who exercised before breakfast burned twice the amount of body fat compared to those who exercised after breakfast. This didn’t result in any actual increased weight loss between the two groups, but there were other notable effects the study identified.
The group that exercised before breakfast drastically improved their body’s ability to control blood sugar levels due to an increase in insulin sensitivity. This increased ability for the body to better control blood sugar levels may wind up cutting one’s risk of developing heart disease and/or type-2 diabetes.
Take this all with a grain of salt, as the study only looked at a six-week interval. But this short duration demonstrated that for expending the same amount of effort, it may be wiser for you to workout before eating your scrambled eggs rather than after. •