A Good Reason Not to Skip Breakfast Teens who skip breakfast are more likely to be obese. This may be one of the causes of rising obesity rates among adolescents. According to the largest study to follow the breakfast habits of teens, those who skipped the meal were five pounds heavier on average. They also ate less healthily during the day and exercised less frequently. The obesity rate for adolescents has tripled over the past 20 years. Sources: Bloomberg.com March 3, 2008 Sometimes Referred to as “The Forgotten Vitamin” Vitamin K is absolutely essential to build strong bones… and helps promote heart and immune health.* This little-known vitamin may be one of the keys to fighting the signs of aging.* Plus, it’s a stronger antioxidant than vitamin E or coenzyme Q10.* * These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Find Out More Dr. Mercola's Comments: Obesity has become a major concern for American children. In the last two decades, the prevalence of overweight adolescents has nearly tripled, and current statistics show 16 percent of children are overweight or obese. Overweight and obese children not only face a heightened risk of health problems -- heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, gastrointestinal problems, and type 2 diabetes, just to name a few -- but they are also likely to suffer from low self-esteem and depression as a result of their weight. Being overweight or obese can take a big emotional toll on a young child or teen. The idea that skipping breakfast can lead to weight gain is not new. Studies have shown that eating breakfast can have beneficial effects on: Appetite Insulin resistance Energy metabolism One study found that obesity and insulin resistance syndrome rates were 35 percent to 50 percent lower among people who ate breakfast every day, compared to those who frequently skipped it. Unfortunately, it has been my experience that the breakfast offerings in nearly all conventional American restaurants range from terrible to awful when it comes to their impact on your health. There is no question in my mind that the breakfast menu is the worst as it typically consists of highly oxidized eggs, carbs like waffles, oatmeal, muffins, cereal, fruit juice, doughnuts, bagels, toast, and pancakes, or fried foods like bacon. What Do You Eat for Breakfast? But there’s more to it than simply not skipping the meal. Many children eat sugary cereals and breads for breakfast, chased down with a can of soda or sugary fruit juice. These kinds of eating habits may cause even more harm than not eating breakfast at all. Nearly all of us feel better when we start the day with a good meal. The challenge that most face is being pressed for time in the morning, and this is equally true for children and teens as their over-worked parents. The simple solution for this is to go to sleep a bit earlier, and rise a bit earlier to give yourself enough time to eat without rushing. When you plan breakfast meals for yourself and your family, vow to avoid any of these common, typically non-healthy breakfast items: Doughnuts Cereals Fruit juice Waffles and pancakes Bagels and toast (even whole grain organic types) ALL cereals (even whole grain organic types) Many people are confused about why whole grain breads and cereals are not recommended. They’re such common staples that most can’t imagine them not being good for you. Carb types can actually do well with grains, but remember; only about 15 percent of the population are carb types, at best. So for the majority of you, grains and cereals should be avoided as much as possible. Why? Because grains rapidly break down to sugar in your body, stimulating insulin production. So, if you: Are overweight Have high cholesterol Have high blood pressure Have diabetes ... then you are best served avoiding these foods. If your nutritional type is carbohydrate oriented and you don’t have any of the above problems, then grains are a possible option for you. But, rest assured; if you indulge in grains to excess you are heading for one of the above diseases. What is My Breakfast? Many are curious about what food I choose for my breakfast so I thought I would share that now. Prior to understanding Nutritional Typing I used to juice vegetables, but now my breakfast has far more fat. I typically make porridge with several ounces of fresh raw coconut cream, which I obtain locally as it is not available commercially. Then I mix 2-3 raw organic free-range eggs into it, and stir in some rice bran and some raw organic nuts. That typically keeps me going strong till lunch. So, What are Some Other Good Breakfast Options? My primary recommendation for Carb and Mixed nutritional types is to prepare and consume fresh vegetable juice, making sure you also eat the pulp. It’s loaded with so many valuable phytonutrients, it would be unwise to discard it. Juicing may not be the best option for Protein types (like me), however, because you would want to limit yourself to 10 ounces or less of raw juice each day, and restrict the vegetables to lower potassium varieties such as spinach and celery. If you don’t juice you can always have left-over dinner for breakfast. While this is not the ideal option, it is far better than nearly all traditional breakfasts and certainly better for most than not eating anything. Why Should I Juice Vegetables Rather Than Eat Them? Good question. There are three main reasons why juicing your vegetables for breakfast is a good idea: 1. Most of us have relatively compromised intestines as a result of less than optimal food choices over many years. This limits your body's ability to absorb all the nutrients from the vegetables. Juicing will help to "pre-digest" them for you so you will receive most of the nutrition rather than having it go straight through you. 2. Vegetable juicing allows you to eat more vegetables than you would normally. By incorporating the juice into your eating plan you will easily be able to reach the one pound of raw vegetables per 50 pounds of body weight that you should eat every day (unless you’re a Protein type, in which case you may only need about ½ pound per 50 pounds of body weight per day). 3. If you eat the vegetables like a salad, you will be having far too many salads during the week. This will violate the rotation principle and increase your likelihood of developing an allergy to some of the vegetables.