Breakfast Quality Varies by Location among Low-Income Ethnically Diverse Children in Public Urban Schools

J Nutr Educ Behav. 2018 Feb;50(2):190-197.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.jneb.2017.09.009. Epub 2017 Nov 6.

Abstract

Objective: To evaluate breakfast location and children's food choices.

Methods: Cross-sectional analysis of 1,371 fourth- through sixth-grade students in 2013. Foods and beverages in 17 categories characterized breakfast choices: (1) ≥ 1 fruits or vegetables, (2) ≥ 1 foods high in saturated fats and added sugars (SFAS), and (3) meeting School Breakfast Program (SBP) requirements.

Results: Among breakfast eaters (n = 1,133; 82.6%), 46.0% ate at home, 13.1% ate at school, 41.0% ate at multiple locations; and 21.8% ate at a corner store. Those eating at school were more likely to consume ≥1 fruit or vegetable (odds ratio [OR] = 1.90; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.26-2.87), less likely to eat ≥1 SFAS food (OR = 0.46; 95% CI, 0.22-0.94), and more likely to meet SBP requirements (OR = 2.47; 95% CI, 1.42-4.29). Those eating at corner stores (n = 247) were more likely to consume high-SFAS foods (63.9% vs 9.2%; P < .001).

Conclusions and implications: Eating school breakfast increased the odds of consuming fruit, choosing lower SFAS, and meeting nutritional requirements of the SBP relative to other locations.

Keywords: breakfast; children; corner stores; eating patterns; school meals.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Breakfast*
  • Child
  • Continental Population Groups / statistics & numerical data
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diet* / standards
  • Diet* / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Food Services* / standards
  • Food Services* / statistics & numerical data
  • Fruit
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Poverty
  • Schools / statistics & numerical data*
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Urban Population / statistics & numerical data
  • Vegetables