For some time the benefits of consuming a protein rich breakfast have been documented - better blood glucose regulation, higher ratings of fullness and a nutrient rich option are all reasons to enjoy dairy, eggs or fish at breakfast time.
Now, specifically when it comes to weight loss, whey protein found in dairy based breakfast options, including a whey based protein shake have shown superior weight loss results compared to traditional high carb breakfast options.
Researchers from Tel Aviv University compared three different breakfast options - a high protein breakfast in which the protein was predominantly from dairy foods; a second high protein option with protein via soy, tuna or eggs and a traditional carb breakfast option.
Over the 12 week study period, which also included a larger breakfast and lunch followed by a smaller calorie controlled dinner, dieters who consumed a dairy based breakfast lost 7.6kg compared to 6.1kg for dieters in the other proteins group and just 3.1kg for dieters in the high carb group.
This study supports previous research results which have found that a protein rich, egg based breakfast, which is particularly high in the amino acid leucine, is of particular benefit for weight loss as leucine helps to regulate insulin levels.
But in this study, whey protein specifically found in dairy rich breakfast options including Greek yoghurt, milk and concentrated in protein powder appeared to offer the added benefit of helping to suppress the hunger hormone ghrelin.
The group eating a breakfast with whey protein had fewer spikes in their blood sugar levels after meals when compared to the other two diets.
Fluctuating blood glucose levels can result in sugar cravings, feelings of fatigue and flagging energy and concentration levels.
Traditional carb rich breakfast options - breakfast cereal, toast, bagels, juice and muesli can be easy to overconsume and can contain two to three times the carbohydrate load of protein rich breakfasts.
This study supports the hypothesis that high carbohydrate breakfasts leave us prone to fluctuating blood glucose levels and weight gain over time compared to higher protein options.
This does not mean that do need to ditch the toast and cereal completely. Rather looking for ways to boost your protein intake via dairy or eggs offer positive benefits when it comes to weight control.
For example teaming a little muesli with a serve of low sugar, high protein Greek yoghurt; eggs with your breakfast bagel or toast or skip the juice in favour of a whey protein smoothie. All of these options offer 20g of high quality protein, and will help to keep you full and satisfied throughout the morning.