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Low-carb breakfasts could be beneficial for managing Type-2 diabetes: B.C. study

Having a higher protein and fat breakfast can help manage blood sugar, the study says

A small change at breakfast could make a big difference for people with type-2 diabetes, B.C. researchers have found.

Switching out lower fat foods like toast and oatmeal for foods higher in protein and fat, like eggs with bacon or cheese, can assist in better blood sugar regulation, according to the research.

Led by University of British Columbia Okanagan researchers, the study was conducted over a 12-week period and included 121 participants. Split into two groups, one group was advised to eat low-carb breakfasts while the other did the opposite. Continuous glucose monitoring was done throughout the survey period, and subjects logged their hunger, energy and activity levels.

While there were no significant physical differences between any participants in each group, the low-carb group saw a reduction in blood-sugar levels and some were also able to reduce the usage of glucose-lowering medication, noted researcher Barbara Oliveira.

READ MORE: Getting to the Heart of Type 2 Diabetes and Eating Well

Variations in blood-sugar levels throughout the day were also significantly lower in the low-carb breakfast group, results showed.

Participants in the low-carb group also reported lower calorie and carbohydrate intake at lunch and through the day, a finding that the study suggests means a breakfast richer in proteins and fats can also impact overall daily eating habits.

“Having fewer carbs for breakfast not only aligns better with how people with T2D handle glucose throughout the day, but it also has incredible potential for people with T2D who struggle with their glucose levels in the morning,” Oliveira said.

Research was conducted in collaboration with the University of Wollongong in Australia, and was partially funded by peer-reviewed grants from the Egg Farmers of Canada and the American Egg Board.