Objective To assess the prospective associations of breakfast, lunch, and dinner skipping at age 4 years with body fat (ie, percent fat mass, body mass index [BMI], and weight status) at age 6 years. Study design Data were analyzed from 5913 children participating in the Generation R Study, a population-based prospective cohort study in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Meal-skipping behaviors were assessed through parent-report questionnaires. Children's weight and height were objectively measured and converted to BMI SDSs. Weight status (ie, overweight or normal weight) was defined according to age- and sex-specific cutoff points. At age 6 years, percent fat mass was assessed by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. Linear and logistic regression analyses were performed, adjusting for covariates and BMI at age 4 years. Results Breakfast skipping at age 4 years was associated with a higher percent fat mass at age 6 years (β = 1.38; 95% CI, 0.36-2.40). No associations were found with BMI or weight status. Furthermore, no associations were found between lunch and dinner skipping at age 4 years and body fat at age 6 years. Conclusion Breakfast skipping at age 4 years is associated with a higher percent fat mass at age 6 years. Further prospective studies, including intervention studies, are warranted to extend the evidence base on the directionality and causality of this association.

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Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jpeds.2015.09.039, hdl.handle.net/1765/82948
Journal Journal of Pediatrics
Wijtzes, A.I, Jansen, W, Bouthoorn, S.H, van Lenthe, F.J, Franco, O.H, Hofman, A, … Raat, H. (2016). Meal-Skipping Behaviors and Body Fat in 6-Year-Old Children. Journal of Pediatrics, 168, 118–125. doi:10.1016/j.jpeds.2015.09.039