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The Effect of Breakfast Prior to Morning Exercise on Cognitive Performance, Mood and Appetite Later in the Day in Habitually Active Women

Brain, Performance and Nutrition Research Centre, Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne NE18ST, UK
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Nutrients 2015, 7(7), 5712-5732; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu7075250
Received: 20 April 2015 / Revised: 3 July 2015 / Accepted: 6 July 2015 / Published: 14 July 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Balance)
Pre-exercise nutritional practices for active females exercising for mood, cognitive and appetite benefits are not well established. Results from an initial field pilot study showed that higher energy intake at breakfast was associated with lower fatigue and higher overall mood and alertness post-exercise (all p < 0.05). In a follow-up, randomised, controlled trial, 24 active women completed three trials in a balanced, cross-over design. At 0815 h participants completed baseline cognitive tasks, mood and appetite visual analogue scales (VAS) and were administered a cereal breakfast (providing 118 or 236 kcal) or no breakfast. After 45 min, they completed a 30 min run at 65% heart rate reserve (HRR). Parameters were re-assessed immediately after exercise, then hourly until lunch (~1240 h), immediately post-lunch and at 1500 and 1900 h via a mobile phone. Breakfast enhanced feelings of relaxation before lunch (p < 0.05, d > 0.40), though breakfast was detrimental for working memory mid-afternoon (p = 0.019, d = 0.37) and mental fatigue and tension later in the day (all p < 0.05, d > 0.038). Breakfast was also beneficial for appetite control before lunch irrespective of size (all p < 0.05, d > 0.43). These data provide information on pre-exercise nutritional practices for active females and suggest that a small breakfast eaten prior to exercise can benefit post-exercise mood and subjective appetite ratings. View Full-Text
Keywords: breakfast; exercise; cognition; mood; females breakfast; exercise; cognition; mood; females
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Veasey, R.C.; Haskell-Ramsay, C.F.; Kennedy, D.O.; Tiplady, B.; Stevenson, E.J. The Effect of Breakfast Prior to Morning Exercise on Cognitive Performance, Mood and Appetite Later in the Day in Habitually Active Women. Nutrients 2015, 7, 5712-5732.

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