Can Kids Skip Breakfast?

Ask Dr. Jason Fung

There are tons of questions about intermittent fasting. Can kids skip breakfast? And what do you do if you develop a headache while fasting?

Dr. Jason Fung is one of the world’s leading experts on fasting for weight loss or diabetes reversal. Here are a his answers to those questions and more:

Fasting and Headache

Hi Dr. Fung,

I have just jumped into a 32-hour fasting yesterday. I had almost no hunger feelings but a terrible headache during the day and the last night.

Would it be ok to take a headache pill with acetylsalicylic acid (called aspirin here in Denmark) during my next 32-hour fasting or do you consider it to be a “no go”?

Annette

 
Annette,

I see no problem with taking over the counter analgesics. Headaches are very common when starting fasting and usually go away after a few times.

Dr. Jason Fung

Hunger Pains

Hi Dr. Fung,

Is it possible to shrink the size of your stomach by controlling your portions (not gastric bypass) so that overtime you are physically not able to eat as much and not feel hungry at all?

I have been on LCHF for 12 weeks now and want to step it up a bit for the next 12 weeks to see if my weight loss improves. My 12 week experiment includes keeping carbs under 20 g, protein under 55 g, and fat under 92 g as I hope this will put me in true ketosis.

However, I have noticed that along with fasting from 7 p.m. to 11 a.m. daily – this is strict and I am some days more hungry than other days. If I stick to it – will it one day become the norm and I will no longer feel hunger pains?

Also, can you please recommend some books on athletes that use intermittent fasting so I can read up?

Thank you,
Pharelle

 
Pharelle,

The stomach does become slightly smaller if you fast, but most of the effect is hormonal.

I don’t know of any book specifically for athletes and fasting. There is little enough written about fasting as is.

Dr. Jason Fung

Can Kids Skip Breakfast?

I was recently watching one of your lectures and noticed your circadian rhythm chart. I was wondering if anyone has looked into whether, according to the circadian rhythm, IF would be more effective skipping the dinner meal instead of the breakfast meal (IE 18:6 fasting window from 1 pm to 7 am vs. fasting window from 7 pm to 1 pm).

Also, my 8-year-old is not hungry in the morning. Often he goes to school without eating breakfast, not because it’s not offered, but simply because he doesn’t feel like eating anything. I know that you don’t recommend fasting for children, but is there any harm in skipping breakfast if he doesn’t want it?

Amberly

 
Amberly,

Yes, according to circadian rhythm, it may be better to skip dinner than breakfast. However, from my own work schedule, it is easier for me to skip breakfast, so that is what I often do.

It is no problem for your son to skip breakfast if he is not hungry. If his body is refusing food, there is no reason to force it in. The problem arises when people skip breakfast and use that as an excuse to eat a donut at 10:30.

Dr. Jason Fung

 

More

Intermittent Fasting for Beginners

More Questions and Answers

Many more questions and answers:

Intermittent Fasting Q&A

Read all earlier questions and answers – and ask your own! – here if you are a member:

Ask Jason Fung about intermittent fasting and type 2 diabetes – for members (free trial available)

Read Dr. Jason Fung’s new great book The Obesity Code for many more insights:

The Obesity Code

More About Intermittent Fasting and Diabetes

What is Fasting? – Dr. Jason Fung
How to Maximize Fat Burning – Dr. Jason Fung
How to Fast – The Different Options – Dr. Jason Fung
The 7 Benefits of Fasting – Dr. Jason Fung
The Top 5 Myths of Fasting – Dr. Jason Fung
Breakfast! Is It Really That Important? – Dr. Jason Fung
The Most Common Questions – Dr. Jason Fung
5 Tips to Make Fasting Easier – Dr. Jason Fung
How to Get Started with Fasting – Dr. Jason Fung
The Power of a 7-Day Fast – Dr. Jason Fung
Who Is Dr. Jason Fung?
The Perfect Treatment for Weight Loss and Diabetes – Dr. Jason Fung
The 2 big lies of type 2 diabetes – Dr. Jason Fung
The Key to Obesity – Dr. Jason Fung

3 Comments

  1. Stipetic
    Amberly, my 11 yo daughter is like your son. She has no appetite in the morning, and thus we don't force her to eat. She goes to school with a decent lunch, which she only eats at about 2 o'clock in the afternoons! So, her body is naturally doing an IF. She tells me she is too busy playing during the 3 recesses they have to be hungry! The 7 yo, on most days, asks for breakfast. Sometimes I wonder if it's because the older one prefers meat and the younger one tilts more toward carbs at dinner. I think it's best to just let kids eat when they are hungry.
  2. vsou
    is this really save? i have read obesity code over amazon, i am also fasting now for 6 days, but i read on multiples sources that i will loose a lot of muscle that way.... is there a way to control how much muscle is lost with fasting?
    Reply: #3
  3. Peter Biörck Team Diet Doctor
    Hi vsou!

    If you are a member feel free to ask our experts about this:
    http://www.dietdoctor.com/member/ask-the-experts

    If you loose weight then almost always a part of that will be muscles. I don't think you should worry about that.

    is this really save? i have read obesity code over amazon, i am also fasting now for 6 days, but i read on multiples sources that i will loose a lot of muscle that way.... is there a way to control how much muscle is lost with fasting?

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