New Scientific Study Shows Quality Breakfasts Reduces Insulin Risk for Kids

New Scientific Study Shows Quality Breakfasts Reduce Insulin Risk for Children

Breakfast is often said to be the most important meal of the day, and new research reveals just how important it is to eat the right type, especially for children.

The new research¹ carried out with 832 Spanish schoolchildren (8-13 years) measured the influence of breakfast quality on insulin resistance (when cells do not respond to insulin and can’t take up glucose from the blood as easily).

The Breakfast Quality Index was used to evaluate their breakfast quality – an index comprising ten items, including whole fruit. Higher-quality breakfasts were associated with a lower risk of insulin resistance, particularly in boys.

The study encouraged the inclusion of whole fruits (such as berries), dairy products and cereals (ideally wholegrain) at breakfast but advised excluding foods rich in simple sugars and butter.

The study comes in the same month as another², which finds that it is important to establish a healthy association with breakfast from an early age. For example, understanding that sugary cereal is not a regular occurrence, whereas fresh berries are a tasty, healthy and refreshing start to the day.

Creating positive thematic associations with healthy breakfast options from an early age could help children develop positive lifelong breakfast habits.

A bowl of fresh raspberries

Dr Emma Derbyshire, Public Health Nutritionist and adviser to British Berry Growers, commented, “Berries are a perfect food for children to associate with healthy and fun breakfasts. They’re colourful and sweet, and you can be really creative with how they are included within breakfasts to make them even more appealing.

They provide fibre which could help to plug dietary gaps and help children to feel fuller for longer. They also provide antioxidants which in some studies has been linked to improved concentration and memory, making them perfect for eating before the start of a school day”.

About British Berry Growers
British Berry Growers is an organisation that represents 95 per cent of berries supplied to UK supermarkets.  It funds Love Fresh Berries – a year-round campaign that celebrates the seasonality of soft fruits.


² Salaz-Gonzalez MD et al. (2023) Breakfast Quality and Insulin Resistance in Spanish Schoolchildren: A Cross-Sectional Study Int J Environ Res Public Health 20(2):1181. Available at:

² Pickard A et al. (2023) Poor conceptual knowledge in the food domain and food rejection dispositions in 3- to 7-year-old children. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology Volume 226, 105546

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