Publication Details

This is a preprint of an article whose final and definitive form has been published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition as: Williams, PG, Breakfast and the diets of Australian children and adolescents: an analysis of data from the 1995 National Nutrition Survey, International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, 2007, 58(3), 201-216. Copyright 2007 Taylor & Francis. The International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition is available online here through Taylor & Francis.


The aim of this study was to describe the nutrients provided to Australian children and adolescents by the breakfast meal and compare the food and nutrient intakes and health of regular breakfast eaters (those who ate breakfast five or more days a week) and skippers (who are breakfast rarely or never). The Australian Bureau of Statistics was commissioned to undertake additional analysis of data collected in the 1995 Australian National Nutrition Survey. The survey included 24-hour recalls, physical measurements and a food habits questionnaire collected during the period February 1995 to March 1996, with a nationally representative sample of 3007 Australians aged between 2 and 18 years. The median nutrient intakes at breakfast and the proportion of the daily total contributed by breakfast were calculated. Differences between regular breakfast eaters and breakfast skippers in terms of nutrient intake, BMI and health status were compared using student t-tests. The findings show the typical breakfast consumed by young Australians was low in fat, high in carbohydrate and a good source of thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, calcium and magnesium. Those who didn't eat breakfast cereal were much more likely to have inadequate nutrient intakes, especially of thiamin, riboflavin, calcium, magnesium and iron. There was no difference between the fat intake or the BMI of regular breakfast eaters compared to breakfast skippers. Regular breakfast consumption is associated with better diets for children and adolescents.



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