An Australian research team has found eating breakfast for two hours before work and breakfast at work is good at keeping the heart healthy.
Key points:A new study by the National Nutrition and Food Research Agency found that a single cup of cooked oatmeal with coffee, fruit and vegetables daily for two weeks helped to protect against heart diseaseAn average Australian worker gets about 20 hours of work out of their days and breakfast is the best way to get the nutrients in, it found.
The study, published in the Journal of Nutrition, compared the effect of eating breakfast with coffee and a lunch break and found that the two periods of breakfast provided the most benefits.
The researchers found that if workers took the break at lunchtime, their average risk of dying from cardiovascular disease was reduced by 33 per cent.
“This means that for a healthy breakfast, a single-cup of oatmeal or a lunchbreak, one can have a significant effect on the risk of death and cardiovascular disease,” senior author Dr Fiona Lee said.
“The key is that this benefit is significant, and lasts for at least two weeks.”
Dr Lee said the study showed that people should not eat breakfast every day and was just a way to be more active.
“We know that exercise and healthy eating can prevent cardiovascular disease, so we wanted to see if there was an effect of one meal a day that lasted for two to three weeks,” she said.
The research was funded by the Australian Research Council, the National Health and Medical Research Council and the National Science Foundation.
Dr Lee is a member of the Australian Institute of Nutrition and Dietetics and is a research fellow at the University of Sydney.
Dr Jane Steed, who led the research team, said the benefits of breakfast were similar to the benefits seen from drinking coffee or eating a good meal.
“It’s important that people eat breakfast at the same time every day,” she told news.com.au.
“So, you don’t need to be physically active to have a good breakfast.”‘
If you’ve got a problem, eat it’The research involved a sample of over 3,500 workers who worked in the public sector between 2009 and 2014.
In the group of workers, researchers asked about their symptoms and lifestyle before and after the first two weeks of the study, including symptoms like fatigue and heartburn.
They also had blood tests and a physical examination.
After a week, the participants returned to their workplace, where the researchers assessed the participants’ heart and blood pressure, their blood glucose levels, blood pressure and body weight.
Dr Steed said it was important to remember that all the participants were in the same job, and had to eat their breakfast together, which was provided at home.
“You don’t have to have that meal on the job, but it does have to be together,” she explained.
“If you’re working in a busy area, it may be more difficult for everyone to eat together, but you can still eat at home.”
A full-time researcher at the research institute, Dr Steed was also involved in the study.
She said if workers did eat breakfast, the research showed the benefits were similar.
“In this study, there was a significant reduction in the risk for cardiovascular disease [among the people who had eaten breakfast], which is very good news,” she added.
“Because of the fact that we had to work in a large office, the workers were all part of a larger team.”
They all had their own office space, so there was always people working in the area, so that’s an added benefit.
“Dr Stesseed said people should eat a meal every day if they had symptoms of heart disease.”
People who have heart disease and diabetes and who have high blood pressure are likely to eat more carbohydrates and have lower glycaemic indexes than the healthy group, so if you have symptoms of these, then you may want to try a low carbohydrate, high glycaemia breakfast,” she suggested.”
For people who are overweight, or people with high blood cholesterol, it might be helpful to eat a low glycaemoric breakfast as it helps with reducing these levels.
“But if you’re trying to avoid having these symptoms and you’re not overweight, then it might not be so good to eat breakfast.”
For more information about heart health, check out the ABC’s Health page.