What are Americans eating for breakfast?
We kick off with new data on what Americans are eating for breakfast in a session presented by Dr Erin Quann, VP, nutrition and marketing affairs at the National Dairy Council, based on an analysis of 2001-8 data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES).
It’s getting harder to define ‘breakfast’, as many Americans no longer eat three square meals a day (NHANES lets consumers self-define it, eg. if you count it as breakfast, it’s breakfast).
18% of Americans skip breakfast, 20% eat it out of the home, and the remainder eat it at home.
We get 17% of daily calories from breakfast but a much higher proportion of nutrients, suggesting Americans are making reasonably good choices.
Children aged 2-18 years can be divided into six groups when it comes to breakfast choices:
- Ready to eat (RTE) cereal and milk (33.6%).
- Grain products (waffle, bagel) and milk (31.3%).
- Cooked cereal (2.3%).
- Protein foods - eg. eggs, bacon (7.8%).
- Grain food eaters: eg. Muffin, donut, croissant (6.4%).
- Breakfast skippers (18.6%).
Kids that eat RTE cereal and milk for breakfast are more likely to get more of their daily nutrients than those in other groups, especially calcium, vit D and potassium.
As kids grow up, they’re more likely to skip breakfast.
Up to 40% of tweens and teens are not regular breakfast eaters.
There is a significant positive relationship between RTE cereal and milk consumption and overall nutrient intakes, and an inverse correlation with BMI (kids that eat RTE cereal and milk for breakfast are less likely to be overweight/obese).