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'Home' breakfast eaters stay slimmer

Consumer Reports News: August 16, 2011 12:38 PM

If you regularly take time for breakfast, even if it’s just grabbing a banana on the way out the door, you’re not alone—and you may be on to something.

Most of the 1,234 Americans in our recent survey said they ate breakfast on the day we called, and 84 percent of those people said the food came from home. Moreover, their body mass index—a measure that uses weight and height to calculate body size—tended to be lower than those who said they ate breakfast out.

Popular breakfast choices included:
• fruit (42 percent)
• fruit juice (37 percent)
• cold cereal (29 percent)
• whole-wheat bread, toast, or English muffin (25 percent)
• bacon, ham, or sausage (19 percent)
• oatmeal (18 percent)
• yogurt (15 percent)
• eggs (14 percent)
• egg substitutes (8 percent).

Women were more likely to say they had yogurt than men (20 percent vs. 10 percent). And men were more likely to eat meat for breakfast (22 percent vs. 15 percent). Among cereal eaters, 28 percent chose some form of Cheerios (we didn't ask for specific brand names), making it the clear winner. Just 22 percent of those surveyed said they had skipped breakfast altogether.

Learn how to build a better breakfast and what to include and what to avoid. Also, find out which high-fiber cereals were rated the tastiest.

The Consumer Reports National Research Center conducted this nationally representative telephone poll, which covered a number of topics on diet and exercise.

Sue Byrne

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