(HealthDay News) – In overweight or obese women, missing breakfast is associated with insulin resistance, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of The Endocrine Society, held from June 15–18 in San Francisco.

Elizabeth A. Thomas, MD, from the University of Colorado Denver, and colleagues conducted a randomized cross-over trial to assess the metabolic responses to skipping breakfast in a group of nine overweight and obese women. On two study days, one month apart, the participants either ate breakfast or had no breakfast, and then consumed a standard lunch four hours later. Blood sampling was performed every 30 minutes for three hours after lunch.

The researchers observed no difference in pre-lunch insulin or glucose between the conditions, but in the no-breakfast condition, the insulin and glucose total area under the curve (AUC) was higher than in the breakfast condition. Pre-lunch free fatty acids were higher in the no-breakfast vs. the breakfast condition, while pre-lunch triglycerides were lower in the no-breakfast condition. In the no-breakfast condition, the total and incremental AUCs for free fatty acids were higher than in the breakfast condition. The triglyceride total AUC was lower in the no-breakfast condition, but the incremental AUC did not differ between the conditions.

“Our study found that acute insulin resistance developed after only one day of skipping breakfast,” Thomas said in a statement. “This information should help health care providers in counseling patients as to why it is better to eat a healthy, balanced breakfast than to skip breakfast.”

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