While North Americans generally consume enough protein, they tend to eat a small amount at breakfast, moderate amounts at lunch and the largest amount at dinner. New research presented at The Obesity Society's annual scientific meeting in Atlanta found eating a breakfast rich in protein significantly improved appetite control and may help women to avoid overeating later in the day.
Eating high protein sausage and egg-based breakfasts curbed hunger throughout the morning, compared with a low-protein breakfast (pancakes and syrup) or skipping breakfast, in 18-55-year-old women.
All of the breakfast meals contained approximately 300 calories and similar quantities of fat and fibre. The protein-rich breakfast bowls contained 30 to 39 grams of protein. Participants completed questionnaires to rate aspects of appetite (e.g. hunger, fullness, and desire to eat) before breakfast and at 30-minute intervals between breakfast and lunch. A standard lunch meal of tortellini and sauce was served and subjects were asked to eat until comfortably full.
Study participants had improved appetite ratings (lower hunger, more fullness, less desire to eat) throughout the morning after eating each protein-rich breakfast, and also ate fewer calories at lunch, compared with the low-protein breakfast and breakfast skipping (water only).
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