There is little information on how breakfast choices are associated with dietary intakes in Australian boys.
(i) To determine the proportion of breakfast skippers, ready-to-eat cereal (RTEC) consumers and non-RTEC consumers at breakfast; (ii) to compare breakfast, and daily nutrient intakes and nutrient density, between the three groups; and (iii) to compare daily nutrient intakes against nutrient recommendations.
Cross-sectional analysis of 12 to 16-year-old boys (n = 781) from the 2007 Australian National Children's Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey.
Forty-two percent of boys consumed RTEC at breakfast; 38% did not consume RTECs; and 20% skipped breakfast. Breakfast skippers had a higher body mass index and waist circumference compared with RTEC consumers (P ≤ 0.05). At breakfast, RTEC consumers had a higher intake of total sugars and a lower intake of fat and sodium versus non-RTEC consumers. Total daily nutrient density for calcium, iron, thiamin, riboflavin, zinc, dietary folate equivalents, magnesium and iodine was higher for RTEC consumers versus non-RTEC consumers and breakfast skippers (all P ≤ 0.05). Fifty-nine percent of 14 to 16-year-old RTEC consumers reached the fibre adequate intake versus 34% and 24% of non-RTEC consumers and breakfast skippers, respectively (all P ≤ 0.01). More RTEC consumers met the calcium estimated average requirements versus non-RTEC consumers and breakfast skippers (P ≤ 0.01).
Breakfast choice, specifically RTECs and the foods consumed with them, provide valuable nutrients that may assist boys in meeting nutrient requirements. Consumption of RTECs may be one way in which intakes of key nutrients, relevant for growth and development, could be increased in older boys.