Background

In Korea, skipping breakfast is a major concern as an unhealthy dietary habit. The relationship of skipping breakfast with overweight and obesity has been established in children and adolescents in European countries, but it has been reported differently in Korean adolescents. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between BMI and skipping breakfast in Korean adolescents.

Methods

Data from 13th Korean Youth Health Behavior online Survey(2017) was used. This survey was self-reporting online questionnaires surveyed to examine the health behaviors such as smoking, drinking, eating habits, and physical activity of Korean youth. A total of 56,933 12-18-year-olds selected in this study. The skipping breakfast was defined as breakfast intake of less than 5 times a week. BMI and health behaviors were compared between the breakfast skipping group and the control group.

Results

45.4% of the subjects(25,836) were in the breakfast skipping group and 54.6%(31,097) were in the control group. BMI was significantly higher in the breakfast skipping group than in the control group (21.6 ± 3.24 kg/m2 vs 21.4 ± 3.26 kg/m2, P<0.001). The frequencies of breakfast skipper were 44.9% of the normal weight group, 47.3% of overweight group (P<0.001). After adjustment for health behaviors and general characteristics, the risk of overweight was higher in the breakfast skipper group than in the control group(Odd ratio; 1.125, 95% CI; 1.077-1.176).

Conclusions

This study shows that the skipping breakfast was related with Korean adolescent overweight. Therefore, longitudinal research is needed to determine whether breakfast is overweight or not.