Substitutions of Oatmeal and Breakfast Food Alternatives and the Rate of Stroke

Stroke. 2020 Jan;51(1):75-81. doi: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.119.024977. Epub 2019 Dec 12.


Background and Purpose- Studies indicate that consuming breakfast every day, and particularly oatmeal, is associated with lower risk of stroke. However, few studies have considered replacement foods when considering foods usually consumed at breakfast. We, therefore, aimed to model substitutions between the breakfast food products oatmeal, eggs, yogurt, or white bread and subsequent risk of stroke. Methods- Participants from the Danish cohort study (Diet, Cancer and Health; n=55 095) were followed for 13.4 years, during which 2260 subjects experienced a first-ever stroke. Breakfast foods were assessed using a validated 192-item food-frequency questionnaire at baseline. Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate adjusted hazard ratios and 95% CIs for associations between hypothetical substitutions of standard portion sizes of breakfast foods and stroke. Results- Modeling replacement of white bread or eggs with oatmeal was associated with a lower rate of total stroke (hazard ratio [HR]=0.96 [95% CI, 0.95-0.98]; HR=0.96 [95% CI, 0.93-0.98], respectively), total ischemic stroke (HR=0.96 [95% CI, 0.94-0.98]; HR=0.96 [95% CI, 0.94-0.99], respectively), and ischemic stroke due to small-artery occlusion (HR=0.95 [95% CI, 0.93-0.98]; HR=0.95 [95% CI, 0.91-0.99], respectively). Furthermore, modeling replacement of eggs with oatmeal was associated with a lower rate of total hemorrhagic stroke (HR=0.94 [95% CI, 0.89-0.99]). Modeling replacement of yogurt with oatmeal was not associated with stroke. Conclusions- Our findings suggest that a diet containing oatmeal instead of white bread or eggs may be associated with a lower rate of stroke.

Keywords: bread; breakfast; diet; meals; yogurt.

MeSH terms

  • Breakfast*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Diet*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Risk Factors
  • Stroke / epidemiology*
  • Stroke / etiology*