Millions of Brits Skip Breakfast Due to Food Prices, Credit Crunch, Busy Lives

by Tanya Thomas on Aug 22 2008 8:59 AM

A new study has revealed that the majority of Britons skip their breakfast daily because preparing it turns out to be too time-consuming. The study, which included school going children, discovered that the average Brit goes without breakfast 91 days a year- that implies once in every 4 days.

The results show that men aged between 17-34 are most likely to skip the first meal of the day, while women are the biggest breakfast eaters - accounting for 43 per cent of the UK's breakfasts.

Experts believe soaring food prices and the threat of redundancies arising from the credit crunch are forcing people to get to their desks earlier.

However, nutritionist Carina Norris said the first meal of the day is essential to kick-start the body's metabolism and provide enough energy for the day.

"Having a balanced diet is very important for a healthy lifestyle," The Scotsman quoted her, as saying.

"I recommend that everyone eats breakfast," she added.

Norris also pointed out that breakfast is particularly important for children.

"If children haven't eaten and go to school then their energy levels will be low and it can affect their concentration and learning," she said.

Despite the results indicating that people don't even have time to grab a slice of toast, Norris said a nutritious breakfast is important for a healthy diet.

"If you eat toast then it should be on wholemeal. Balanced breakfasts include wholemeal cereal with milk, yogurt and glass of orange juice. Scrambled eggs on brown bread and baked beans are really good for you," she said.

For those who are in a hurry Norris recommends a piece of fruit to be eaten on the run.

Michael Lean, Professor of Human Nutrition at Glasgow University, believes a bowl of porridge provides the best start to the morning.

He said: "People should eat a low-fat breakfast - a couple of pieces of fruit and a bowl of Scottish porridge. It is a much better start to the day than some sad looking thing that is cold, dried-up and out of a packet."

The survey was carried out by The Grocer magazine.