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Sophie Law & Catherine Addison-Swan

Doctor shares food swap advice after 'healthy' breakfast caused weight gain

A doctor has issued advice on which breakfast foods can help you to maintain a healthy weight after finding that swapping out a common dish for a less sugary option led to significant changes in his health.

Appearing on diet expert Michael Mosley's BBC podcast Just One Thing, doctor and epidemiologist Professor Tim Spector advised listeners to switch up their breakfast foods after making a surprising discovery about his own "healthy" breakfast choice. The expert explained that not only did his favourite breakfast lead to a spike in his blood sugar levels, but also led to him gaining an extra kilogram in weight each year.

Tim typically opted for the common combination of toast and a cup of tea in the mornings - but after a glucose monitor revealed a "worrying sign", the doctor decided to change his eating habits and consequently saw an "instant" improvement. He explained that instead opting for yoghurt, nuts and berries and switching his coffee for tea made a "radical difference" to his health, the Daily Record reports.

READ MORE: Expert shares belly fat burning fruit and vegetables to help with weight loss

Professor Spector explained: "When I was a healthy doctor epidemiologist, it [breakfast] would be mostly a cup of tea with low fat milk in it. And a nice glass of orange juice, and toast and marmalade. It would be brown toast - I didn't know at that time that they're often dyed brown.

"I was eating towards what I was told at the time as a doctor was a healthy diet. And it turns out that that diet had led to me gaining about a kilo in weight over the previous 10 years, so that I'd gained about 10 kilos over that time. And it was only when I stuck a glucose monitor on me as I was eating my breakfast that it shot up into the normal diabetic range.

"There was a worrying sign that really these carbs and sugars weren't right for me," he said. After discovering the effect that his breakfast was having on his body, the doctor decided to switch up his usual morning food - which he said has made a huge difference to his health.

"This is why I say experiment your breakfast because for me, it was good to change to a high fat breakfast," he said. "So, I have full fat yoghurt with some nuts and seeds sprinkled on there and whichever berries I happen to have - either frozen or fresh depending on the season.

"I switched my tea to coffee, because we now know coffee is really good for your gut microbes," he explained. "It was a radical difference.

"And I instantly saw that changing brought down my sugars. I wasn't getting sugar spikes. I also didn't feel nearly as hungry at 11 o'clock at work. I didn't feel I needed a mid morning biccy as I used to, and I was just feeling generally better."

For those inspired to switch up their breakfast, the NHS has a range of recipes to try on its Healthier Families website.

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