You might have heard that your body has a natural internal clock that regulates many processes, ranging from when you feel sleepy to hunger cues.

This body clock also influences how you process sugar throughout the day, creating an ideal window when people with type 2 diabetes should have their breakfast, according to a diabetes specialist.

Fortunately, Tara Bruni, Diabetes Specialist Dietitian from St Thomas NHS Foundation, has revealed the best time to break your overnight fast.

Bruni said: “[The natural internal clock] regulates our metabolism and functions differently depending on the time of day.

“In the morning, our bodies are primed to efficiently handle sugar, meaning they can effectively manage blood sugar levels. This is because our insulin response is more robust, and our ability to process glucose is at its peak.

“As the day progresses, particularly in the afternoon and evening, our bodies become less efficient at processing sugar and regulating blood sugar levels.”

Therefore, eating breakfast at “the right time” can help align your eating habits with your body’s natural rhythms.

“This ensures that we’re providing fuel (in the form of food) when our bodies are best equipped to handle it, which ultimately helps to maintain more stable blood sugar levels throughout the day,” Bruni said.

With this in mind, the specialist revealed that the best time to eat breakfast for type 2 diabetics is within two hours of waking and no later than 10 am.

Bruni said: “When you eat breakfast before lunch, it has a special effect on how your body handles glucose after lunch.

“This effect, called the ‘second meal effect,’ means that even if you eat the same lunch, your blood sugar levels rise less compared to when you skip breakfast.

“Studies have found that when people have breakfast, their blood sugar levels after lunch and dinner are lower.”

Apart from timing your first food of the day correctly, the diabetes specialist also revealed the best and worst breakfasts for type 2 diabetics.

Bruni said: “The best breakfast foods for people living with type 2 diabetes are those that include a combination of protein and high-fibre carbohydrates [for example, whole grains, fruits and vegetables].

“Protein helps slow down the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates in the body. This means that when you eat a meal that includes both protein and carbohydrates, your blood sugar levels rise more gradually and stay more stable compared to a meal that’s mainly carbohydrates.

“Examples are porridge with nuts or seeds, Greek yogurt with berries and chia seeds, or whole grain toast with avocado and eggs.”

On the other hand, the breakfast foods you should avoid include those high in refined carbohydrates and added sugars, such as sugary cereals, pastries, white bread, and juices.

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