Breakfast and obesity
Research shows that, if people eat a healthy breakfast -- not Pop-Tarts or doughnuts -- they are less likely to become obese, because they are less likely to snack and overeat at lunch. A protein-rich breakfast increases a person's ability to focus and concentrate, research shows.
People who usually eat breakfast are 35 to 50 percent less likely to be obese and diabetic than those who usually do not. About 47 percent of whites and 22 percent of blacks say they eat breakfast. CARDIA study, about 3,000 participants, 2003.
In a 15,000-participant, study, the risk of becoming obese was shown to be 34 percent greater in those who skipped breakfast. The International Journal of Obesity, 2010.
Eighty five percent of Americans agree that eating breakfast is important, but increasing numbers of Americans say it is too hard to find the time.
Breakfast and concentration/performance in school
West Virginia leads the nation in diabetes, heart attacks, and obesity, among others. One in four West Virginia 11-year-olds has high blood pressure and high cholesterol. One in five kindergartners is obese.
As one public health official said, “This is a public health emergency.”
Learn about the problem, meet people who are trying to bring those numbers down, and learn what you can do.
This ongoing project has been created with the help of the Dennis A. Hunt Fund for Health Journalism, administered by the California Endowment Health Journalism Fellowships at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.
The stories can also be viewed in chronological order at www.theshapewerein.wordpress.com