We've all heard the saying 'eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper' – now a large study has hailed it a successful weight loss strategy.
And slimmers see better results if they skip dinner altogether, the researchers also discovered.
The idea of having a hearty breakfast to boost our metabolism and set ourselves up for the day is popular with a host of stars including Angelina Jolie and Kelly Osbourne.
After studying 50,000 adults, the researchers also recommend fasting overnight for up to 18 hours.
They wrote in the Journal of Nutrition: 'Our results suggest that in relatively healthy adults, eating less frequently, no snacking, consuming breakfast, and eating the largest meal in the morning may be effective methods for preventing long-term weight gain.
'Eating breakfast and lunch five to six hours apart and making the overnight fast last 18 to 19 hours may be a useful practical strategy.'
People who made breakfast the largest meal saw a more significant decrease in their BMI than those who made lunch their most calorific meal.
Eating more than three meals per day – snacks were counted as extra meals – and making supper the largest meal of the day were associated with a higher BMI.