Ready To Eat Food For Children

Breakfast consumption among children has been associated with higher nutritional adequacy, improved cognitive and academic performance, higher school attendance, and better mood and psychosocial functions compared to breakfast skipping. Furthermore, breakfast consumption has been associated with a lower risk of excess adiposity in both children and adolescents.Children who consume breakfast regularly tend to have higher intakes of total daily energy and key nutrients such as fibre, calcium, vitamins A and C, riboflavin, zinc and iron compared to those who skip breakfast.

Ready-to-eat cereals (RTEC) are defined as processed cereals that can be eaten without further preparation, and are also known as cold cereals. RTEC can be made of different types of grains including corn, wheat, oats and rice.
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 My Breakfast 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.

Ref-Nasir et al Journal(Food and Nutn Research-Vol 61-2017)

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