Consumption of ready-to-eat cereals (RTEC) among Malaysian children and association with socio-demographics and nutrient intakes – findings from the MyBreakfast study
Background : The association between different types of breakfast meals and nutrient intakes has been studied to a lesser extent.
Objective : This study compared nutrient intakes at breakfast and throughout the day between Malaysian children who consumed ready-to-eat cereals (RTEC) and those who did not.
Methods : Anthropometric and dietary data for 1955 children aged 6–12 years from the MyBreakfast study were used in the analysis.
Results : Overall, 18% of the children consumed RTEC at breakfast on at least one of the recall days. RTEC consumption was associated with younger age, urban areas, higher income and education level of parents. Among consumers, RTEC contributed 10% and 15% to daily intakes of calcium and iron respectively and ≥20% to daily intakes of vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin and niacin. RTEC consumers had significantly higher mean intakes of vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, iron and sugar but lower intakes of fat and sodium than non-RTEC consumers at breakfast and for the total day.
Conclusion : Consumption of fortified RTEC at breakfast was associated with lower fat and sodium intakes and higher intakes of several micronutrients both at breakfast and for the total day. However, total sugar intakes appeared to be higher.
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