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Am J Epidemiol. 2008 Jan 15;167(2):188-92. Epub 2007 Dec 12.

Energy intake at breakfast and weight change: prospective study of 6,764 middle-aged men and women.

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MRC Epidemiology Unit, Institute of Medical Science, Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, United Kingdom.


To investigate the association between percentage of total daily energy intake consumed at breakfast and weight change in middle-aged men and women, the authors analyzed data from a prospective population-based cohort study from Norfolk, United Kingdom. Participants were 6,764 men and women aged 40-75 years at baseline (1993-1997). Participants completed a 7-day food diary at baseline, and objective measurements of height and weight were carried out at baseline and follow-up (1998-2000). Mean baseline body mass index (weight (kg)/height (m)(2)) was lowest among persons in the highest quintile of percentage of daily energy consumed at breakfast (mean values were 26.0 in the highest quintile and 26.3 in the lowest quintile), despite higher daily total energy intake in this group. Although all participants gained weight, increased percentage of daily energy consumed at breakfast was associated with relatively lower weight gain (adjusted beta coefficient = -0.021, 95% confidence interval: -0.035, -0.007; p = 0.004). The association between percentage of daily energy intake consumed at breakfast and weight gain was independent of age, sex, smoking, total energy intake, macronutrient intake, social class, and physical activity. Redistribution of daily energy intake, so that more energy is consumed at breakfast and less energy is consumed later in the day, may help to reduce weight gain in middle-aged adults.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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