I’ve often talked about why it’s often good to avoid carbs for breakfast, especially prior to a workout (and especially if you’re not doing any hard workout at all).
I sometimes get into the “science” of it, but I also often like to simply things by talking about how the human body evolved over 400,000 years.
Fridges were only invented 100 years ago, that’s less than 0.025% of human existence.
Bakeries and shops are a few hundred years old, again, far less than 1% of human existence.
The reason I’m saying this is because the human body evolved over 98% of its existence to function as follows:
Go hunt for food or walk around and gather food (expend energy)
THEN eat the food (replenish energy)
This is how our hormonal system has developed, especially hormones which control our metabolism and blood sugar levels: insulin and ghrelin.
The explosion of high carb breakfasts (which started with Mr. Kellogg’s cereal invention 120 years ago) plays a big part in today’s staggeringly high rise in Type II Diabetes and obesity.
In fact, a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has provided even further evidence that carbs at breakfast is a bad idea.
They took a group of adults with Type II Diabetes (the kind of Diabetes that’s acquired as an adult because of a high carb diet and little exercise).
They split the group into 2 groups: both groups had the same lunch and dinner, but breakfast was different.
Group 1: low carb high fat breakfast: less than 10% of calories from carbs, 15% protein, rest fat.
Group 2: “recommended diet by nutritionists”: 55% from carbs, 30% from fat, 15% from protein.
What they discovered was clear:
Group 1’s blood sugar measurements were lower than Group 2 right after breakfast, during the rest of the day, and even 24 hours later!
Group 1’s level of hunger before dinner was lower than Group 2
The results of this study provide further evidence that having too many carbs at breakfast is simply bad for your health.
The only exception I would have here is the following: if you’re a hard charging athlete and you just did a hard workout and depleted your glycogen (carbs) stores, you would want to have some carbs to replenish those reserves and be ready for your second workout (but don’t overdo it).
When I review blood test results for “elite” amateur athletes, I’m always surprised at how many have high blood sugar (or high insulin levels / HOMA).
Stay healthy and fit!