The Best Breakfast Habit of the World’s Longest Living People – Eat This Not That
Breakfast can make or break the rest of your day. Even though we know it’s the most important meal of the day, many Americans treat breakfast with very little care, tossing it aside whenever our schedules are busy. But eating a healthy, nutrient-dense meal in the morning can set us up for success, give us fuel to keep going, and plenty of energy to make healthy decisions.
In fact, skipping breakfast altogether is one of the worst ways to start the day when it comes to your health. Skipping that morning meal has been found to slow metabolism, lead to weight gain, negatively impact your immune system, and even lead to higher stress levels.
While many Americans can certainly improve their healthy breakfast habits, some of the world’s longest living people know the value of a healthy breakfast. In fact, many blue zones around the world (areas of the world with the highest concentrations of centenarians) practice eating your biggest meal of the day first thing in the morning.
Blue zones were invented to identify regions of the world where people have lived the longest and healthiest lives. Regions include Sardinia in Italy, Ikaria in Greece, Okinawa in Japan, Nicoya in Costa Rica and Loma Linda in California.
Since the inception of the Blue Zones concept, researchers have discovered commonalities in the lifestyles of these communities, including their diets, movements, values and spiritual practices. And when it comes to how they handle breakfast, blue zone centenarians try to fit as many nutrients into their morning as possible.
According to a research article published in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicinee, one of the core values shared by Blue Zone centenarians is the practice of eating their largest meal in the morning and their smallest meal in the afternoon and evening. This concept goes against what many Americans naturally practice, which is to eat a breakfast that lacks nutrients or not to eat at all while saving larger meals for later in the day.
Another major difference that sets many of these centenarians apart from the rest of the world is that they eat healthy, whole foods at every meal. While many of us can grab a quick morning pastry, Blue Zones eat lots of whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and beans, giving them a morning boost of protein, fiber, and antioxidants. .