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Psychol Health Med. 2016 Oct;21(7):819-26. doi: 10.1080/13548506.2015.1131999. Epub 2016 Jan 5.

Skipping breakfast, sedentarism and overweight in children.

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a Department of Psychology , Oviedo University , Oviedo , Spain.


To show by use of path analysis how in children of 9 and 10 years of age the known relationship between breakfast and high body mass index (BMI) is mediated by sedentary leisure time activities. A random sample of 291 9-year-old and 10-year-old school children from the Principality of Asturias (Spain) was taken. A transversal design was used, their weight and height were measured and an individual standardized interview was carried out in which they were asked about their breakfast habits and the time they spent each week on sedentary leisure activities. Using path analysis, a model was tested in which breakfast habits and leisure time were the independent variables and the BMI was the dependent variable. The results showed that there was an inverse correlation between number of breakfasts and BMI and a direct correlation between the time spent on sedentary leisure activities and BMI. Path analysis showed that the relationship between the frequency with which breakfast was eaten and BMI was mediated by the time spent on sedentary leisure activities. The above appears to confirm the direct role played by failing to have breakfast in the pandemic of obesity as this habit tends to increase children's BMI. This relationship is, however, mediated by sedentary leisure. According to the data compiled, being overweight in children can only be prevented by modifying not just one of the habits that have been associated with it, but rather the whole group of habits as these appear to make up an obesogenic cluster in which sedentary leisure and not having breakfast are included.


Childhood BMI; sedentarism; skipping breakfast

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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