We’ve all been told that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but just because it is a popular saying, doesn’t mean that you feel hungry in the mornings. A lot of people don’t feel hungry in the mornings and eating breakfast can feel like a challenge.

Although in some cases, a lack of hunger in the morning could be a sign of a more serious issue, not feeling hungry is perfectly normal and is likely no cause for concern. With this in mind, here are 3 reasons why you might not feel hungry in the mornings.

You Ate A Large Meal The Night Before

One of the main reasons as to why you might not feel hungry when you wake up is because you might have eaten a large meal or snacks the night before. This is especially true if the meal was high in protein or fat. Macronutrients in these foods can slow down the emptying of your stomach, which can keep your feeling fuller for longer.

High-fat meals can alter levels of certain hormones that are associated with the feeling of fullness and appetite, which can lead to decreased feelings of  hunger. If you prefer to enjoy a large dinner and choose to skip breakfast the next morning, that’s fine – just ensure that you get the right nutrients and stay hydrated.

Your Hormones Level Change Overnight

Whilst you sleep, the levels of hormones in your body fluctuate and these changes can have an impact on your appetite. Research has shown that epinephrine, more commonly known as adrenaline, tends to be higher in the morning. Adrenaline tends to suppress hunger and appetite by slowing the rate your stomach empties and increases the breakdown of carbohydrates which are stored in your muscles and liver to fuel your body.

Levels of ghrelin, the hunger hormone, are lower in the morning than they are in the evening, which could also explain why you feel less hungry in the morning. These hormone fluctuations are natural and should be no cause for concern.

You Feel Anxious

Your mental health can significantly impact your hunger levels and, as well as symptoms such as fatigue, sleep disturbance and heightened emotions, conditions such as anxiety and depression can cause appetite changes. Anxiety can increase levels of certain stress hormones which can then reduce your appetite. It’s important to note, however, that anxiety and depression do affect everyone differently and some studies have found that some people with these conditions find that they have an increased appetite.

What To Do

If you’re not feeling hungry as soon as you wake up, then it’s fine to wait a bit before you eat breakfast. Often, by the time you have had a shower, gotten dressed and are ready to start the day, you might feel hungry and ready to eat. If you’re still not feeling hungry, then try eating something small to stimulate your appetite, such as a piece of fruit or a yoghurt.

Often, sticking to the same breakfast can reduce your interest in eating in the morning, so try experimenting with some new dishes to spark your interest in breakfast again, and your appetite:

  • Greek yoghurt with berries and granola
  • Porridge with sliced bananas and honey
  • Omelette with mushrooms, bell peppers and tomatoes
  • Toast topped with avocado and poached egg

In the mornings, make sure that you are drinking plenty of water to rehydrate your body after being asleep and take any multivitamins with food. Some supplements work best when taken with food, such as magnesium supplements, and this can help reduce any potential side effects.