High-protein breakfasts said to help teenagers lose body fat, reduce hunger

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Breakfast is considered the most important meal of the day and rightly so, because a new study has suggested that teens who consume high-protein breakfasts will be able to manage their weight better and will also consume fewer calories throughout the day.

The findings are a results of a study that looks into the whether breakfasts can help people improve weight control and what are the effects of different types of breakfasts.

Researchers from the University of Missouri-Columbia studied whether eating breakfast every day for three months would improve weight management in overweight but otherwise healthy teenagers who skipped the meal six to seven days a week.

For their study researcher divided 57 teens into three groups with one eating a 350-calorie normal-protein (13 g) breakfast, while the other was asked to stick to a 350-calorie high-protein (35 g) breakfast. The final group was asked to continue their habit of skipping breakfast.

As far as the contents of the breakfast were concerned, the normal-protein breakfast consisted of cereal and milk while the high-protein breakfast included eggs, milk and lean pork in addition to grains.

After the 3 month period, researchers found that the group on high-protein breakfast voluntary cut their daily food intake by 400 calories while those who were on normal-protein breakfast or continued to skip the meal ended up eating more each day, an extra 120 and 370 calories, respectively. Further, those on high-protein breakfast also reported a reduced hunger level whereas those in the other groups did not.

Those who continued to skip breakfast put on 3.5 pounds of body fat over the course of the 12-week study, while those who ate the high-protein breakfast lost about one pound of fat. Body fat remained unchanged for the group that was on normal-protein diet.

Researchers say that study findings suggest that eating a high-protein breakfast can help prevent further weight gain among breakfast-skipping teens by putting the brakes on hunger and overeating.