Updated: May 27, 2020
Have you heard the old saying "breakfast is the most important meal of the day"? Well, it's kind of true and kind of false. Let me explain:
Instead of breakfast as we traditionally know it being the most important meal of the day, I would argue that your morning is the most important time of the day when it comes to determining if you will be in fat burning or storing mode.
In the morning, we are naturally in a fasted state. Which means we're starting off on a clean slate. Our blood glucose levels are stable and our body is using its own fuel source (stored fat and glucose) as energy. What we do from here will determine how we continue to use or STORE energy.
Today, I'm sharing your 5 step morning fat burning check list to help ensure that you start your day on the right foot!
1. Move for at least 15 minutes before work
This isn't a "calories in calories out"/must be in an energy deficit first thing in the morning thing. The reason why walking and/or exercise is so important first thing in the morning is because this is when your body is naturally in a fasted state. Due to this "fasted state" your insulin (storing hormone) will be lower and your growth hormone (fat burning hormone) will be higher.
You can take advantage of this state by heading out for a 15 minute walk, doing a strength training workout or throwing in a high intensity interval training class.
If you're curious how walking can be MORE effective than running for weight loss, check out the video below!
2. Choose a drink that won't spike your insulin
Insulin is THE storing hormone. When it is present, your body locks up your fat cells so that it can't be used as energy. In order to tap into your fat cells as an energy source (and therefore boost fat burning mechanisms), you need insulin to be relatively low. The best way to go about this first thing in the morning is to choose drinks that DON'T spike insulin.
These can include Keto Coffee, unsweetened tea, black coffee and, of course, water.
On the flip side, the drinks that cause a MASSIVE spike in insulin and therefore shifts you into fat STORING mode are those that contain any added sugar. Sugar is a powerful way to increase your insulin levels and unfortunately, sugar-packed drinks are extremely common in the U.S. For example, a grande Chai Tea Latte from Starbucks will have around 42g of sugar!! Not to mention the Vanilla Latte coming in at 31g of sugar and the Pumpkin Spice Latte at 50g of sugar!!
If you're craving a Pumpkin Spiced Latte or Chai Tea Latte, you can opt for THESE low sugar options!
3. But first drink water
I love coffee (like, a LOT), but it's also important that you get enough water in before you start sipping on your cup of Joe. Caffeine acts as a diuretic and can lead to further dehydration if you don't replenish the water from the start. Being dehydrated can lead to increased cravings as well as headaches from electrolyte imbalances. I always opt for at least equivalent amounts of water to coffee BEFORE I start drinking my Keto Coffee. For example, if you're drinking a 16 oz. coffee, then you would have 16 oz. of water first. And don't forget your Celtic Sea Salt!
4. Wait a few hours after waking to eat
In other words, utilize the fat burning perks of Intermittent Fasting (IF). Incorporating a fasting and eating window has been found to aid in improving insulin sensitivity and reduce the risk of obesity. IF can also be extremely useful in reducing bloating by boosting the Migrating Motor Complex (MMC) that sweeps out the bacteria in your small intestine that causes bloating.
However, it's important to note that "eating whatever you want during your eating window" (as many people have come to believe is "allowed" with IF) will work AGAINST your weight loss and fat burning goals. Remember, we want to optimize insulin as well in order to tap into fat burning, and the type of food you eat throughout the day has a massive impact on it. Check out the Complete Intermittent Fasting Bundle HERE for the deets on how to incorporate IF and proper Nutrient Timing.
5. Make your first meal a fat burning option
Remember, the type of food you eat can also shift you in or out of fat burning mode. The goal is to optimize your meals in order to reduce the insulin response as much as possible to allow your fat cells to be "unlocked" and used as an energy source. If you have something high in insulin producing ingredients, such as oatmeal with honey or yogurt with granola and berries, then this will shift you out of fat burning mode and in to storing mode.
Get access to 100+ easy and delicious recipes that follow the fat burning guidelines above with the Complete Intermittent Fasting Bundle! Fill your plate with meals like the Upgraded LA Street Tacos, Turmeric Pineapple Smoothie, Pumpkin Chili, PB + Chocolate Chip Cookies and MORE!
Head over HERE to get started!
Autumn Elle Nutrition