3 Protein-Packed Breakfasts That Crush Cravings
If you feel hungry all the time, your morning meal (or lack thereof) could be to blame: Eating a protein-rich breakfast may help control appetite and curb the urge to snack in the evening, according to a study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
The research, conducted at the University of Missouri-Columbia, included 20 overweight or obese females aged 18 to 20 who normally skipped breakfast. Participants rotated through three different groups: a group that ate a 1500-kilojoule cereal breakfast that contained 13 grams of protein, a group that ate a 1500-kilojoule breakfast made of eggs and lean beef that contained 35 grams of protein, and a group that skipped breakfast. After six days of following an assigned eating pattern, the women went through a day of testing, during which they provided blood samples, answered questionnaires about their hunger/satiety level, underwent brain scans, and were offered a variety of post-dinner snacks. Researchers gave participants a week off between each phase of the experiment.
After having a protein-packed breakfast, participants reported feeling less hungry and ate fewer indulgent snacks after dinner. What’s more, the brains of people who had eaten a protein-rich meal in the morning showed less activity in response to images of food later in the day. “Eating a high-protein breakfast stimulates the secretion of a very potent satiety signal (the gut hormone Peptide YY), leading to increased fullness,” says Dr. Heather Leidy, lead author of the study. “These responses appear to last throughout the morning hours and into the afternoon/evening.”
Even if you’re not big on meat, you can still reap the hunger-busting benefits of eating a high-protein breakfast, Leidy says. Just try to incorporate plain Greek yoghurt, nuts, cottage cheese, or soy-based meat substitutes into your am meal.
Not a breakfast person? These tasty protein-packed options will change your mind:
PEANUT BUTTER BREAKFAST SMOOTHIE
EGG TROUT BAGEL
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