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Eating Breakfast Like a King

Nov 02, 2020 06:33PM ● By Ashlyn Zikmund
For people with Type 2 diabetes or metabolic syndrome, the struggle of learning what to eat is probably one of the most difficult aspects of maintaining long-term health. In addition to what someone is eating is when they are eating.


There is a wealth of information regarding the benefits of intermittent fasting, which is an eating pattern that cycles between periods of eating and periods of fasting, and many ways we could go about scheduling our eating window, but as it pertains to stabilizing blood sugar, optimizing eating with metabolic physiology can have profound effects on health.


There is an adage, “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.” Studies investigating meal timing in humans show an increased blood sugar after evening meals compared to identical meals administered in the morning. This impaired evening glucose tolerance is related to the daily rhythmicity of insulin secretion, which is reduced in the evening, respective to the morning.


Additionally, Type 2 diabetics following a protocol consisting of a high-caloric breakfast, standard lunch and low-caloric dinner significantly lowered their post-meal blood glucose concentrations. In comparison, individuals that skipped breakfast had a significantly increased blood glucose secretion after lunch and after dinner. This suggests that eating more calories in the morning and less in the evening has better blood sugar stabilizing effects throughout the day than skipping breakfast.


Further, data shows individuals that report eating one-third of their daily caloric intake in the evening have double the risk of obesity and Type 2 diabetes compared to people that ate more than one-third of their calories by noon. In another study, individuals that consumed more calories at breakfast compared to dinner lost significantly more weight, and improved hepatic lipids and glucose tolerance, compared to the group eating more calories at dinner.


This further suggests that consuming calories earlier in the day as opposed to later has better effects on metabolic parameters such as blood sugar, weight and lipids, all of which are important to prevent and reverse metabolic syndrome.


Dr. Ashlyn Zikmund is a naturopathic doctor at Natural Paths to Wellness, located at 1524 Cedar Cliff Dr., in Camp Hill. For more information, call 717-494-4500 or visit