Don’t skip it: Missing breakfast may damage arteries

New York: Are you in the habit of missing your breakfast everyday? Beware, you may be at an increased risk of atherosclerosis, a condition in which the arteries tend to harden and narrow due to a build-up of plaque, researchers have warned.

On the other hand, eating a healthy breakfast has been shown to promote greater heart health, including healthier weight and cholesterol.

The study showed that atherosclerosis was observed with more frequency among people who skipped breakfast and was also higher in participants who consumed low-energy breakfasts compared to breakfast consumers.

Importantly, people who skipped breakfast had the greatest waist circumference, body mass index, blood pressure, blood lipids and fasting glucose levels.

Participants who skipped breakfast were more likely to have an overall unhealthy lifestyle, including poor overall diet, frequent alcohol consumption and smoking. They were also more likely to be hypertensive and overweight or obese.

Additionally, cardiometabolic risk markers were more prevalent in those who skipped breakfast and low-energy breakfast consumers compared to breakfast consumers.

“People who regularly skip breakfast likely have an overall unhealthy lifestyle,” said author Valentin Fuster, Director of Mount Sinai Heart Institute

“This study provides evidence that this is one bad habit people can proactively change to reduce their risk for heart disease,” Fuster added.

For the study, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, the team in Madrid examined 4,052 male and female volunteers who were free from cardiovascular or chronic kidney disease.

Of these, 2.9 per cent skipped breakfast, 69.4 per cent were low-energy breakfast consumers and 27.7 per cent were breakfast consumers.