Weight Loss
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Just wondering if anybody actually applies the Eat breakfast like a king queen, Lunch like a prince princess and Dinner like a pauper bag lady... after I read about this study in the news:

The Big Breakfast Diet

which advocates a large breakfast including protein and carbs and then following it up with a small low carb lunch and dinner.

I usually eat breakfast, but usually less than 300 calories.  I try to make lunch my biggest meal, but have lately fallen into an old pattern of eating a larger dinner, which I really don't like to do because then I feel uggy the rest of the night.

I've seen people claim that it doesn't matter what time of day you eat - only the total number of calories matters.  But what if it does matter sometimes?

note: as far as I know (and I haven't researched it) there's no Big Breakfast Diet book, but given the commercial nature of our society, I expect there will be a dozen of them out in a week or two!

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Your biggest meal should be breakfast because food is fuel... and when you're just starting out on a long day, you need fuel to sustain you throughout.

Dinner should be smallest because it's at the end of the day and you aren't as active after it.
#2  
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The whole "Big Breakfast" thing came about when people were farmers. They would work in the field in the morning and then come home for a big breakfast. Usually when you wake up you are not hungry but dehydrated. Try drinking a glass of water and I would bet your hunger will go away. Depending on if you want to lose or gain weight it does matter on when you eat but the basic point is that a calorie is a calorie no matter what.

Original Post by beas23:

The whole "Big Breakfast" thing came about when people were farmers. They would work in the field in the morning and then come home for a big breakfast. Usually when you wake up you are not hungry but dehydrated. Try drinking a glass of water and I would bet your hunger will go away. Depending on if you want to lose or gain weight it does matter on when you eat but the basic point is that a calorie is a calorie no matter what.

I'm starving and thirsty in the morning when I wake up. I disagree that people are not hungry (i.e. breaking the fast?) when they first wake up.

I never used to eat breakfast but now I feel much better eating a fairly large breakfast but I generally eat similarly calorie-counts for each meal.

Starving when I wake up too....

I try to eat my smallest meal at dinner, but it's really hard to stick to when socializing.  On the days I do stick to this program, I eat a good-sized breakfast (about 300 - 350 calories) and follow it up with a 200(ish) calorie snack a few hours later. 
When I wake up in the morning, I feel like the "calorie clock" is reset. I'm starting at zero and I have all day to eat my recommended calories. When I wake up, it has been ~8 hour since I've eaten & drank water so it's best to do both. I don't believe it's all thirst.

You know I understand the idea about eatting big breakfasts but I don't know that it works.  My mothers parents about the same amount caloric wise for every meal and are skinny.  They are also pushing their 90's and still alive.  My Fathers parents ate a big breakfast  with a medium sized lunch toward the end of the afternoon and what would basicly be a snack for supper and they both died of heart desease and diabietes.  Grandma was in her 70's and Grandpa was early 80's.  Their oldest son, my father, had only been 55 a month when he passed of the same things that killed them.

I mix it up based upon how Im feeling and what i have to eat.  Im just as likely to get up and make a southwestern omelette for breakfast using 3 eggs as I am to have my weight control oatmeal.   Lunch is never a very big meal for me because I rarely have time for it.    Supper tends to be a bigger meal than lunch and can be bigger than breakfast. 

I really don't think it matters much.  I really think its more about how many calories you eat than it is about when you eat them.

i always feel better when i have my largest meal in the morning and lightest meal at night.  i might not work out in the fields, but i do like the extra energy during the day and i hate waiting to eat if i'm hungry.

it's tough to eat socially though, since most people eat big diners.  i'd loove to eat out for breakfast but my fiance will not wake up early enough and i haave to eat within a half an hour of waking up or i get really impatient!
 

I am starving by breakfast--sometimes my stomach growling wakes me up in the morning.  I love breakfast.  It's the most fulfilling meal of the day and it makes my tummy so happy!  I spend the rest of the day eating smaller meals.  When I'm at work I have a bigger lunch though because I'm active all day and I have that one opportunity to eat.  I hate hate hate dinner...

I'm usually not hungry in the morning.  So, I used to never eat breakfast, and found that a couple of hours into my work day I'd be faint and feel sick.  So now every day, I eat a bowl of cereal and skim milk or oatmeal, and sometimes a glass of OJ.  I find that lasts well into lunch time.  I don't have a big lunch either, because I'm usually just not that hungry by then.  My biggest meal is dinner, so I hope that the "big breakfast" thing isn't the key to weight loss!!

I was infamous for skipping breakfast, ate a decent lunch, but then spent a LOT of time grazing at night. A solid protein/fiber breakfast in the morning is a good idea and it has helped me a lot to stop the night eating. Sometimes I only snack at night and sometimes I want a decent size meal. Listen to your body when it tells you it is full. If I eat too much in the morning, I want a nap by 10am. If I eat too little, I want a cheesburger with chili fries by 10am. ;)

I hate to say it, but grandma was right... good old-fashioned oatmeal is truly become my power food as it really sticks with you. Don't get me wrong, it varies for everone, but there has been no bar, cereal or shake that can do what the ol' oats can do for knocking out that morning hunger and I do feel much more alert and prepped for the day.

I believe in fueling activity.  If you are really active in the morning, then eat a big breakfast with stick-to-your-ribs food.  If you aren't and enjoy dinner, then eat big then.  I vary depending on what I'm doing.  When I worked at night, I skipped breakfast and ate a big lunch and light lunch at work. 

I just had a 700 calorie breakfast that I hope will hold til I have my pre-swimming snack. 

I just don't put faith into these inflexible schedules that don't account for individual lifestyles. 

My brain tells me that I should eat a big breakfast and make that the main meal of the day. However I have difficulties achieving this taskCool

In the mornings it takes a while longer for my stomach to wake up- and I just don't have the time to "wait" for it. In addition to that mornings are always so rushed with everything that needs to be done before work that sitting down to eat a proper meal is beyond my capabilities. I need calm to actually eat and I don't feel that in the mornings.

What I try and do is eat something which is high in carbs that will give me a good amount of energy til lunchtime. I only have a short lunchbreak so here again not enough time for a main meal.

My main meal of the day is dinner-and I like this because I have time to cook properly and to sit and enjoy my food. I find it more relaxing.

 

If I ate like that I'd be in serious trouble with having enough energy.  Most of my exercise is after work so I tend to eat a good breakfast ~300-400 calories, two light lunches ~300-500 calories, a few snacks ~50-100 calories and then dinner after the exercise ~300-800 calories depending on the exercise and intensity of it.

Look at the study details. They used obese women and fed them either ~1000 or ~1200 calories a day. This is almost certainly a deficit greater than 1000 calories, even if they were all sedentary!

This study doesn't prove anything. The greater success of the "big breakfast group" could be because they were getting more complete nutrition and the diet was more sustainable. They need to do more studies with male and female subjects at a variety of weights and a variety of calorie intake levels to be able to say "big breakfasts help weight loss". They identified a correlation, not a cause-and-effect relationship.
Original Post by ser25:

Look at the study details. They used obese women and fed them either ~1000 or ~1200 calories a day. This is almost certainly a deficit greater than 1000 calories, even if they were all sedentary!

This study doesn't prove anything. The greater success of the "big breakfast group" could be because they were getting more complete nutrition and the diet was more sustainable. They need to do more studies with male and female subjects at a variety of weights and a variety of calorie intake levels to be able to say "big breakfasts help weight loss". They identified a correlation, not a cause-and-effect relationship.

I totally agree with you!

They should have a study where both groups have exactly the same calorie intake and the only thing that is different is the timing of the main meal...

Apart from that, I can say from personal experience that a big breakfast is better than a big dinner. When I was living in Germany, I had my main meal at lunchtime, and only a very light dinner. Now that I am in Australia, it's just the other way round and I put on a few pounds...

#16  
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I would not doubt that you are hungry in the morning. It really depends on when your last meal is and what the last meal was. The point about being thirsty and not hungry is based on your insulin index which determines if your mind receives a signal that it is hungry. Below 80 your body says it is hungry and above 120 your body says it is full. If you are looking to lose weight a good trick is to drink a glass or water with some sugar in it ( water and 1/4 cup of OJ, or Water and some sport drink). The point in this is to get your index back above 80 and the sensation to eat will go away for a while. If you have less fat and more lean muscle this may or may not work for you. Some studies have shown that by implementing this form of a drink into your daily routine can lower the amount of food you will eat in a day. The trick is not to slam it down but to sip on it. Personally, on the days I don't work out this method can help me not eat breakfast for another 2 hours. Really it is just a way to trick your mind.

You always have to take this research with a pinch of salt, remember the scientists studying this are looking at specific physiological processes - not holistic behaviours /health, they are answering a specific question about some aspect of human biology - they're not answering the question 'how do you eat to lose weight'. When the media gets hold of it they 'interpret' the findings as they wish.

I think there is a lot of sense to it. You don't want to eat to REPLACE  calories, you eat to provide FUEL for your body to burn. So chowing 600 calories at supper, when for the next 3 hours you'll be sat watching TV and then off to bed doesn't make much sense to me. BUT I think you have to work this theory into your schedule and be sensible with it we don't all follow a set daily, diurnal rhythm.  I am trying to follow the basic rule of matching my eating habits to my activities, which is tough for me as I have a really varied schedule. Plus I am trying to train for a marathon but at the same time 'control' (rather than reduce) my calorie intake an weight.

I work as a biologist on a boat, so on a full working day I am up at 5am, on the boat all day and back home at 8pm. I try to have some cereal and some fruit and a lot of coffee for breakfast, I'm usually rushing, tired and eating is hard that early so I often carry it with me and eat it on my commute. I then sort of graze through the day (lots of fruit, veggies, whole grains, bran muffin, maybe some miso soup or low fat noodle soup, quite a bit of protein half way through) to try and keep my energy levels up. When I get home I have a light supper like a little bit of soup with crackers or a muffin, and some fruit and yoghurt, I try to take it easy on animal proteins and starchy carbs. I then try not to binge on the sweeties my flatmate always buys.

On a day off I usually do some training, and eat depending on that. Today is afternoon long run, so I big brekkie and carb up in the morning, light lunch and light supper. If I was having my long run tomorrow I would probably eat a lot more carbs in the evening. If I was doing weights or kickboxing this avo I would prob have a protein heavy supper to help my muscles recover.

The main thing about all this is listening to your body, figuring out when you need to eat and when you don't. I used to eat big meals at supper time cos I'm english and that's how I was raised. Now I find, especially if I have exercised early evening, I'm just not that hungry at tea time, and I naturally lean towards grazing throughout the day rather than meals.

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