Bath volunteers needed to put healthy research on their breakfast menu
It’s often billed as the most important meal of the day.
But why is breakfast so important - and could eating it help some people to actually lose weight?
Researchers at the University of Bath trying to answer these questions are making a final call for volunteers to take part in a study at the Claverton Down campus.
A team from the university’s Human Physiology Research Group are concluding a three-year investigation into the role of breakfast consumption in weight change and other health issues.
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They are looking for around 20 more overweight volunteers between the ages of 21 and 60 to take part in the next phase of a study which began in 2010.
So far the team has recruited more than 70 volunteers and needs the final group in order to complete the research. Those volunteering will receive detailed feedback about their body composition, health, lifestyle and diet.
City GP surgeries are supporting the project by sending out letters to suitable patients inviting them to take part.
People interested in taking part should contact the researchers with rough estimates of their weight and height measurements.
Dr James Betts, who is leading the study, said: “It is a commonly held belief that eating breakfast is an important part of a healthy diet. This is based largely on scientific research showing that people who do not eat breakfast are more likely to be overweight and have an increased risk of conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. However, it remains to be established whether there is a direct effect of breakfast on improved health and what the mechanisms for any effect may be.
“Interestingly, research looking at the changes in individuals’ weight over time with breakfast consumption show that the relationship may be influenced by an individual’s initial weight, that is to say that not all groups may respond in the same way.”
Volunteers will be invited to a laboratory at the campus on five separate occasions, which can be scheduled flexibly over a 12-week period. The investigation initially involves two separate tests to compare how each individual responds to having breakfast on one day compared to skipping the meal on another.
Then the volunteers will be randomly divided into two separate groups, with half asked to eat breakfast every day and the other half asked to skip breakfast every day.
For more information and to discuss eligibility for the study, email email@example.com or call 01225 383566.