London: Is your son or daughter in the habit of skipping breakfast regularly? If so, he or she may fall short of the daily required amounts of nutrients that are essential for their growth and development, researchers have warned.
The findings showed that 31.5 per cent of children who skipped breakfast did not meet even the lower recommended nutrient intake (LRNI) of iron.
While, 19 per cent did not meet LRNI for calcium, 21.5 per cent did not meet lower levels for iodine and 7.3 per cent had a folate intake below their recommended nutrient intake level.
On the other hand, children who ate breakfast every day were found to have higher daily intakes of key nutrients such as folate — important for the development of genetic material –, calcium, iron and iodine — key in the development of thyroid function.
“This study provides evidence that breakfast is key for parents to ensure that their children are getting the nutrition they need,” said Gerda Pot, lecturer at the King’s College London.
For the study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, the team included 802 children aged from four to 10 years and 884 children aged 11 to 18 years.
Breakfast was considered as consumption of over 100 calories between 6 and 9 a.m.
The study also showed that, in younger children (four to 10 years old), on days when breakfast was consumed, children had higher intakes of folate, calcium, vitamin C and iodine compared to their breakfast-skipping days.
Out of these same nutrients, for older children (11-18 years old) only calcium intakes were higher on breakfast-consuming days.