Gary 'Smiler' Turner's Blog

My personal website is, and check out my book "No Worries" on Amazon here

Thursday, 20 June 2013

Should I eat breakfast?

There are so many myths about breakfast. Too many! Today I got asked the question as to whether breakfast is important, so I thought I’d do a brief blog post on it.

There is a common myth about breakfast being ‘the most important meal of the day’. ‘Breakfast’, or ‘breaking the fast’ of night is a common myth perhaps based on the other common myth of needing three square meals a day. Yet the only time you need to eat breakfast is if your body is telling you that you need to eat. In fact, the only time to eat is when hungry, and to stop when no longer hungry.

Overnight our brains and bodies will burn around 300kcal of blood glucose. This means we MAY wake up in a calorie deficit - homeostasis is what we are looking to maintain, and in respect to blood glucose it is around 1500kcals. If we drop below this calorie homeostasis the deficit will start to be made up by metabolising fat stores.

If you are allowing your body to work according to how it is 'designed' to work, you will only need breakfast if you are hungry. When you are hungry your body produces the hormone ghrelin, which creates the gentle 'pangs' of hunger to tell you to eat. Listen to your body, and it will tell you if you need it or not.

So what happens if you eat breakfast when you are not hungry?

It depends on what you eat. If you eat proteins and fats then you will get a minor insulin spike and a small part of it may become a fat store, or you’ll just pass through the excess in your waste. If you eat carbs then you get an insulin spike. Insulin has the ‘job’ of taking excess food energy, storing it as fat, and keeping it there.

It is the same at any time that you eat when you are not hungry. Your body will not need the energy or nutrients. The excess will be passed through as waste unless the excess is carbs, in which case it will become stored as fat.

I’m tapping this blog out as I eat a nice omelette, made of four eggs, spinach, cheese and tomatoes. It is full of nutrients and very low on carbs. Before this meal I have gone for a run with my huskies. After coming back I waited an hour before eating, as I wasn’t hungry. Only when I was hungry did I eat. 

Yet, if you REALLY want to see an omelette, check out the picture of the ‘uber-omelette’. My friend Jonathan Wong is an amazing chef and often posts pictures of his meals on Facebook. Eggs, red onion, tomato, mushrooms, seared cheese, garnished with spring onions - packed full of yummy goodness and cooked to perfection. This, my friends, is the ‘perfect’ omelette:  


  1. Gary got to agree with you in my opinion we have been conditioned over the years to eat at set times, the advice about having a good start to the day goes back as far as I can remember (long time)weather you wanted/ready for it or not you had to clean the plate before you could go out of the door. I suppose that parents of my time (1944) wanted to give us at least a good meal before we left for school. However the past week has proved to be very successful my wife Doreens been cutting down on portion size and we are now eating as and when we are hungry not at set times, it's working a treat and we will continue it as normal from now on, your BLOG has nailed it confirming shedding weight can be just a change of beliefs. Thanks again

  2. Great stuff, and great work Jon, well done!