a1 Department of Public Health, Sport and Nutrition, University of Agder, PO Box 422, 4604 Kristiansand, Norway
a2 EMGO Institute for Health and Care Research and the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
a3 Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece
a4 Department of Movement and Sport Sciences, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
a5 Slovenian Heart Foundation, Ljubljana, Slovenia
a6 Department of Public Health, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
a7 GENUD (Growth, Exercise, Nutrition and Development) Research Group, EU Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad de Zaragoza, Zaragoza, Spain
a8 The Federal Institute of Sport, Magglingen, Switzerland
Objective The main objective was to assess the relationship of breakfast skipping, television (TV) viewing at breakfast and breakfast without TV with weight status among parents of 10–12-year-olds in eight European countries.
Design A cross-sectional survey assessed breakfast eating and TV viewing at breakfast by three frequency questions and parents were categorized into: (i) breakfast skippers; (ii) breakfast with TV (TV watchers at breakfast); and (iii) breakfast without TV (breakfast eaters who do not watch TV during breakfast). Self-reported weight and height were used to categorize weight status as underweight, normal weight, overweight and obese. Multinomial logistic regression analyses were conducted with weight status as the dependent variable and breakfast habits as predictors, adjusting for sex, ethnicity and level of education.
Setting The survey was conducted in 2010 in 199 primary schools across eight European countries participating in the ENERGY (EuropeaN Energy balance Research to prevent excessive weight Gain among Youth) cross-sectional study.
Subjects Parents (n 6512) of 10–12-year-olds responded to the questionnaire.
Results In the total study sample, with breakfast without TV as the reference group and adjusting for sex, ethnicity and level of education, the OR of being respectively overweight or obese (compared with normal weight) was 1·2 (95 % CI 1·0, 1·4) or 1·8 (95 % CI 1·5, 2·3) for breakfast skippers. The OR of being respectively underweight or obese was 0·5 (95 % CI 0·2, 0·9) or 1·4 (95 % CI 1·1, 1·8) for breakfast with TV.
Conclusions Breakfast skippers were significantly more likely to be overweight and obese, and those eating breakfast while watching TV were significantly more likely to be obese and less likely to be underweight.
(Received May 21 2012)
(Revised December 20 2012)
(Accepted February 05 2013)
(Online publication March 11 2013)