Following article was featured in the New Strait Times on the 29th March 2011. Written by Zuhaila Sedek.

ZUHAILA SEDEK learns how having a regular and healthy breakfast can help one stay slim. It is 8am and you realise that you will be late to work. The late night outing you had yesterday seems to be taking its toll on you. You rush into the bathroom and out again, grab the nearest dress in your closet and rush off to the office.

You missed something important, though — breakfast.

Did you know that numerous research studies have shown that people who skip breakfast regularly are more likely to develop heart disease, prone to flu and suffer premature death prone. They tend to be obese and are less likely to look after their health in the long run.

As scary as it may sound, skipping breakfast, like what model and actress Liz Hurley is doing, appears to get you nowhere.

Nutritionist and fitness instructor Kevin Zahri says your breakfast determines the quality of your day — whether it is productive or otherwise.

“Breakfast kickstarts your day and it is important to have enough energy to start the day. People who skip their breakfast usually feel sleepy, hungry and lethargic,” he said.

We have brunches too. . But all these are more or less the same.

Kevin says that the longer one waits to have breakfast, the slower his or her metabolism will be.

“With slow metabolism, the conserved energy takes longer to be burnt. When the body takes a longer time to burn energy, it is easier to gain weight,” said Kevin.

Taking regular breakfasts helps you stay slim too, provided you’re not eating something like nasi beriyani.

“Breakfast can help control your appetite. It stabilises blood and sugar levels. This regulates your hunger and energy levels” Kevin explains.

Breakfast can help control your appetite. It stabilises blood and sugar levels. This regulates your hunger and energy levels …
When you miss your breakfast, you tend to eat more during lunch. When you eat too much for lunch, you will feel lethargic and sleepy again.

When you miss your breakfast, you tend to eat more during lunch. When you eat too much for lunch, you will feel lethargic and sleepy again,” he adds.

There is no specific time for a person to have their breakfast but on average, the majority of people have breakfast between 6.30am and 10am.

Breakfasts provide one-third of the daily calories needed for a person. It must be balanced with three main components — carbohydrates, proteins and minerals.

Kevin suggests a general baseline for the intake of these three nutrients: 50 per cent of carbohydrate, 35 per cent of protein and 15 per cent of mineral.

“But it is difficult to give the exact percentage of each nutrient needed because every individual is different,” said Kevin.

He mentions that the determinants for the amount of every nutrient taken depend on a person’s sex, age, height, weight and activities.

“The more active you are, the more calories you need. The taller you are, the more energy you will need. The calorie intake of a cyclist to an office worker, of course, differs.”

Back to basics

  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is the amount of energy you need to sustain your life. This includes your breathing, organs and everything else you need to keep alive.
  • Daily Calorie Requirement (DCR) is the amount of calories you should take with consideration of your age, sex, height, weight and activity.
  • Learn how to calculate these and build your own unique diet with Kevin’s How to Lose 5kg in 5 Weeks eBook

Read more: Health: Your ticket to good health http://www.nst.com.my/nst/articles/Health_Yourtickettogoodhealth/Article/

Kevin Zahri

I am a US certified personal trainer and nutritionist with over 12 years experience. Over the years, I have published over 10 books, written for Men's Health, other fitness and lifestyle magazines, hosted TV shows and appeared on various TV shows, programs and magazines. I am also an avid corporate wellness speaker and web entrepreneur.

More about me here or follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

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