Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health      

kidsdata advisory

The Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health | January 30, 2015

Nutrition by the Numbers: Breakfast, Fast Food, Sugary Drinks, Fruits and Veggies

The saying goes that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and multiple studies provide evidence that good breakfast habits in children and youth are associated with improved cognitive functioning, mood and school attendance.

Yet only 62 percent of California public school students in seventh, ninth, and eleventh grades, and in non-traditional schools, reported in a survey that they had eaten breakfast in the past day. More boys than girls said that they had breakfast, and Asian and white students reported the highest percentages (70%) and Latino students the lowest (58%). These 2011-13 data, the latest available, were just published on

See breakfast data for students in your county>>

Data also are available on child and youth consumption of sugary drinks, eating fast food and numbers of servings of fruits and vegetables.

As the public focus on healthful eating increases, many school districts are striving to improve the quality of the food they offer students. Data from a just-released California School Climate Survey indicate whether teachers, administrators, and other staff say that their school provides healthy food choices. For California schools overall, 59 percent of those surveyed either agreed or strongly agreed (42.5% and 16.5%, respectively).

See data for healthy food in schools in your county>>

See Related Data

Helpful Links

Action for Healthy Kids

BreakfastFirst, California Food Policy Advocates

California Center for Public Health Advocacy

California Food Policy Advocates

Dietary Guidelines for Americans, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services & U.S. Department of Agriculture

Food Research and Action Center

Healthy Meals Resource System: School Nutrition Environment and Wellness Resources, U.S. Department of Agriculture

Let's Move: America's Move to Raise a Healthier Generation of Kids

Local School Wellness Policy Resources, California Department of Education

Nutrition in Children and Adolescents Resource Guide, Maternal and Child Health Library at Georgetown University

Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Strategic Alliance for Healthy Food and Activity Environments, Prevention Institute

Map the Meal Gap: Child Food Insecurity, Feeding America

National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), CDC National Center for Health Statistics

SNAP-Ed County Profiles 2014, California Department of Public Health

USDA Economic Research Service: Food Environment Atlas

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Students Who Ate Breakfast in Past Day (Student Reported)
Years: 2011-13

Nutrition Mascots is a program of the Lucile Packard Foundation of Children's Health, which uses data to promote the health and well being of children.
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