“This is the first study to examine the ways in which breakfast before exercise influences our responses to meals after exercise,” co-author Javier Gonzalez said in a statement. “We found that, compared to skipping breakfast, eating breakfast before exercise increases the speed at which we digest, absorb and metabolise carbohydrate that we may eat after exercise.”
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“This study suggests that, at least after a single bout of exercise, eating breakfast before exercise may ‘prime’ our body, ready for rapid storage of nutrition when we eat meals after exercise,” co-author Rob Edinburgh said.
Furthermore, the researchers noticed that the carbohydrates stored in our muscles as glycogen, -- not just the ones from breakfast -- were being burned, too.
“This increase in the use of muscle glycogen may explain why there was more rapid clearance of blood sugar after ‘lunch’ when breakfast had been consumed before exercise,” Edinburgh said.
The researchers said they currently have ongoing studies that are exploring whether eating breakfast before or after exercise on a regular basis influences health.
“In particular, there is a clear need for more research looking at the effect of what we eat before exercise on health outcomes but with overweight participants, who might be at an increased risk of Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease,” Edinburgh said. “These are some of the questions we will now try to answer.”