Date of Award

January 2014

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Department

School of Public Health

First Advisor

Fatma M. Shebl

Abstract

Objectives. We examined breakfast consumption patterns in a longitudinal sample of fifth to seventh grade students and the relationship between the different consumption patterns and weight status over time.

Methods. 1,534 fifth to seventh grade students from 12 randomly selected public schools in New Haven, Connecticut, completed school-based student surveys and physical measures during 2011 to 2013. We also identified students that participated in Breakfast in the Classroom (BIC) program.

Results. Using latent transition analysis, we identified four qualitatively different patterns of breakfast consumption: frequent skippers or infrequent eaters, non-skipping mixed eaters, regular home eaters, and regular school or double breakfast eaters. No evidence of association was found between double breakfast eaters and higher weight status, and there was no association between participating in BIC program and students' body mass index. However, we found a 3-fold increased risk of overweight or obese in skippers compared with regular school or double breakfast eaters.

Conclusion. Our findings support the current efforts to promote participation in school breakfast program. Regular breakfast consumption may have weight-gain prevention effect.

Comments

This is an Open Access Thesis.

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