Using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 1988 to 1994 with an average follow-up of 18 years, researchers collected information from 6,550 participants, 40 to 75 years of age, who had no history of cardiovascular disease or cancer. Participants were asked "How often do you eat breakfast?" and possible answers included, "every day," "some days," "rarely" and "never." Among the participants, 5.1 percent never ate breakfast, 10.9 percent rarely ate breakfast, 25 percent ate breakfast some days and 59 percent ate breakfast every day.
Participants who never consumed breakfast had an 87 percent higher risk of cardiovascular disease-specific mortality than those who consumed breakfast every day. Researchers said skipping breakfast was associated with changes in appetite and decreased satiety, elevated blood pressure, and harmful changes in lipid levels. It was also a behavioral marker for unhealthy lifestyle habits.