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J Am Diet Assoc. 2005 Sep;105(9):1383-9.

The relationship of breakfast and cereal consumption to nutrient intake and body mass index: the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Growth and Health Study.

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  • 1Maryland Medical Research Institute, Baltimore 21210, USA.



To describe changes in breakfast and cereal consumption of girls between ages 9 and 19 years, and to examine the association of breakfast and cereal intake with body mass index (BMI) and consumption of nutrients.


Data from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Growth and Health Study, a longitudinal biracial observational cohort study with annual 3-day food records.


The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Growth and Health Study recruited 2,379 girls (1,166 white and 1,213 black), ages 9 and 10 years at baseline, from locations in the Berkeley, CA; Cincinnati, OH; and Washington, DC, areas.


Frequency of consumption of breakfast (including cereal vs other foods) and cereal; BMI; and dietary fat, fiber, calcium, cholesterol, iron, folic acid, vitamin C, and zinc.


Generalized estimating equations methodology was used to examine differences in the frequency of breakfast and cereal eating by age. Generalized estimating equations and mixed models were used to examine whether breakfast and cereal consumption were predictive of BMI and nutrient intakes, adjusting for potentially confounding variables.


Frequency of breakfast and cereal consumption decreased with age. Days eating breakfast were associated with higher calcium and fiber intake in all models, regardless of adjustment variables. After adjusting for energy intake, cereal consumption was related to increased intake of fiber, calcium, iron, folic acid, vitamin C, and zinc, and decreased intake of fat and cholesterol. Days eating cereal was predictive of lower BMI.


Cereal consumption as part of an overall healthful lifestyle may play a role in maintaining a healthful BMI and adequate nutrient intake among adolescent girls.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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