Heart attacks and skipping breakfast

What do these have in common?

WRITTEN BY: Margaret Swofford
Image Source: CliffMuller via Flickr

A study of older men done by Harvard researchers recently found that those who skipped breakfast had a 27 percent higher chance of having a heart attack than those who ate breakfast.

For all of the women out there, you may want to pay attention too. Because while the study was done for men, it’s likely they are not the only ones affected by waking up and not eating breakfast.

While experts aren’t 100 percent sure why skipping breakfast could have such detrimental effects, they do have some ideas why.

They believe that when you skip breakfast you get hungrier during the day, which causes you to eat larger meals. When you eat larger meals, the body has to digest and process a higher amount of calories in a shorter amount of time. Sometimes this can lead to spiked sugar levels in the blood and cause blocked arteries.

But what counts as a “breakfast”? Surely fatty foods like syrup on sugary pancakes, bacon, and salted-up eggs could also be the cause for heart problems.

Andrew Odegaard, a researcher from the University of Minnesota, studies the links between heart attacks and medical conditions such as obesity and high blood pressure.

"We don't know whether it's the timing or content of breakfast that's important. It's probably both. Generally, people who eat breakfast tend to eat a healthier diet," Odegaard said.

Studies show that around 18 percent of adults in the U.S. skip breakfast, which could be a sign for trouble in the future. Breakfast doesn’t just correlate to this horrifying medical issue. Brushing over this important meal could also be linked to obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and other significant health problems.

So pay attention to what you eat and just don’t skip breakfast.

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