Forget breakfast for dinner, dessert for breakfast is about to become your new favorite meal. That’s right: your mornings just got a little brighter.
In a recent study presented at The Endocrine Society’s 94th Annual Meeting, 200 non-diabetic obese volunteers were randomly assigned to eat one of two low-calorie diets. The first group ate a breakfast with a small sweet, like a cookie, cake, chocolate or doughnut. The second ate a slightly smaller breakfast without a treat. Both groups consumed a total of 1,400 calories per woman, and 1,600 calories per man.
Both groups had lost an average of 33 pounds per person halfway into the 8-month study. However, participants who ate a sweet with their breakfast also lost an additional 15 pounds on average, while the group with no breakfast sweet regained an average of 22 pounds per person.
That’s a net-loss of 11 pounds per non-breakfast-sweet dieter and 48 pounds per breakfast-sweet dieter. That’s no small difference.
Even with the same caloric goal, those who had dessert said they felt less hungry and suffered fewer cravings than those who did not. But why? Researchers have a theory.
Daniela Jakubowicz, MD, the study’s principal investigator, attributes the dessert-success to the combination of protein and carbs increasing the feeling of being full, and the dessert decreasing cravings for sweet, starchy and fatty foods.
The bad news, as you might expect, is that you can’t just eat anything for breakfast and experience weight-loss results or healthy living. Dr. Jakubowicz recommends eating a substantial breakfast with about 37-43% of your daily calorie goals. All encompassing, this breakfast should be high carb and high protein, around 60 grams and 45 grams, respectively. Incorporate a small treat with your regular eggs and toast or other protein rich breakfast for the best results.
Check out some tasty, gluten-free or vegan options to mix up your mornings, like a tofu and bell pepper scramble, some tempeh bacon or baked breakfast potatoes. Add a small treat of your choice that’s around 60 calories to round out your meal and make your morning (and your day) shine.