I’m just going to get to the point: Articles with titles like these are getting absurd. In this day and age, with all that we’ve learned about health, we should know better than to click on them.
If you clicked this article with the hopes you’d learn a weight loss secret involving waiting until noon to eat, I am sorry. I’m not only sorry because I won’t be providing that, but also because it’s unfortunate that that our media environment has convinced you that you need that information.
If you clicked this, it’s likely that there is a part of you that believes the insidious, overpowering message from popular culture that looking thin is more important than anything else — more important than your happiness, your well-being, and relationship building.
You might even believe that getting thin is your pathway to happiness, your well-being, and relationship building.
It is not.
Skipping breakfast to lose weight is terrible advice for a number of reasons. Besides the fact that skipping breakfast has been scientifically proven to cause weight gain more often than weight loss, the much more caustic side effect (and the much more upsetting one) is that it can cause both your personal life and your relationship with your body to suffer.
If you skip breakfast, you’re probably bitter and tired in the morning. That’s a good five hours of your day during which you’re condemning yourself to be unhappy and most likely unproductive at work. The 10 pounds you won’t even lose isn’t worth that — and even if you did lose them, the 10 pounds you would lose wouldn’t be worth it, either. There are more important things in life than your body’s weight.
If you prioritize losing weight to this extent, it’s likely you’re willing to deprive yourself of more than breakfast — perhaps you’ll avoid grabbing coffee with a coworker in the morning, or miss out on a dinner with friends, or say no to late-night ice cream with the kids, or leave happy hour early because of your desire to avoid calories. You could miss out on a lot of valuable relationships for the sake of a few pounds.
If you prioritize losing weight and skip breakfast, you’re engaging in an argument with your body and its needs until lunch. Restricting food when you’re hungry not only makes you hangry, but it also results in a lower metabolism, increased levels of cortisol (a weight-gain-inducing stress hormone), and ultimately a loss of control around food.
Research shows that the healthiest people listen to their bodies and eat intuitively. They eat when they are hungry and indulge in their cravings without feeling guilty. These are the people who have the lowest stress levels, the healthiest (though not necessarily the lowest) weight, and the happiest lives.
It’s time you do it, too: Start trusting your body over some random article from the internet.