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Open Access Research article

Factors associated with skipping breakfast among Inner Mongolia Medical students in China

Juan Sun1*, He Yi1, Zhiyue Liu1, Yan Wu1, Jiang Bian1, Yanyan Wu1, Yuki Eshita2, Gaimei Li3, Qing Zhang1 and Ying Yang1

Author affiliations

1 Inner Mongolia Medical College, Inner Mongolia Minority Autonomous Region, China

2 Oita University, Faculty of Medicine, Oita, Japan

3 Inner Mongolia Normal University Institute of Media, Inner Mongolia Minority Autonomous Region, China

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Citation and License

BMC Public Health 2013, 13:42  doi:10.1186/1471-2458-13-42

Published: 17 January 2013

Abstract

Background

Few studies on the breakfast consumption habits of medical students in China have been carried out. The aim of the present study was to determine the prevalence of skipping breakfast and factors associated with skipping breakfast among medical students in Inner Mongolia of China, and to assist in the design of interventions to improve breakfast consumption habits of medical college students in this region.

Methods

From December 2010 to January 2011 a cross-sectional survey was conducted among medical students in the Inner Mongolia Medical College using a self-administered questionnaire. The prevalence of skipping breakfast in relation to lifestyle habits was described and factors associated with breakfast consumption were identified using multiple logistic regression analysis.

Results

The overall prevalence of skipping breakfast was 41.7% and 23.5% for males and females, respectively. The Faculty of Medicine Information Management had the highest breakfast skipping prevalence. Logistic regression models found that the main factors associated with breakfast consumption habits among medical students were gender, class years of education, monthly expenses, faculty, appetite, sleeping quality, and the learning process; monthly expenses, sleeping quality, and the learning process showed a dose-dependent relationship.

Conclusions

Breakfast consumption was associated with many factors, most importantly monthly expenses, sleeping quality and the learning process. The prevalence of skipping breakfast is significantly higher compared recently reported figures for medical students in western countries and other areas of China. Improvement of breakfast education should be considered for students in which higher monthly expenses, poor sleeping quality, or a laborious learning process have been identified.

Keywords:
Breakfast; Behavior; Medical students; Prevalence