Skipping breakfast might seem like a good way to many teens to save on calories but a new study suggests the opposite, and says that eating healthy breakfast daily may help adolescents avoid overeating later in the day and might help disrupt unhealthy eating patterns.
Researchers at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health Project Eating Among Teens (EAT) studied the link between breakfast frequency and five-year body weight change in more than 2,200 adolescents.
Their findings indicated that daily breakfast eaters consumed a healthier diet and were more physically active as compared to the breakfast skippers during adolescence.
The researchers also found that after five years, the daily breakfast eaters tended to gain less weight and have lower body mass index levels than those who had skipped breakfast as adolescents.
Mark Pereira, PhD, co-author on the study, said that the study extends the literature on the topic of breakfast habits and obesity risk because of the size and duration of the study.
"The dose-response findings between breakfast frequency and obesity risk, even after taking into account physical activity and other dietary factors, suggests that eating breakfast may have important effects on overall diet and obesity risk, but experimental studies are needed to confirm these observations," he added.