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Nick Studies Kids’ Eating Habits

7/13/2005 6:29 AM Eastern

Nickelodeon announced the results of its “Kids, Food and Eating Behaviors Study” Wednesday.

The network said the study was designed to provide information on attitudes and behaviors affecting food choices and eating among kids 6-14.

Among its findings:

• A majority of kids have autonomy in deciding what and when to eat during the day.

• Only 50% of kids reported that they eat breakfast every day.

• Only 39% of kids consistently eat three meals per day.

• A total of 74% of kids said they choose what they eat for breakfast all the time or most of the time.

• A total of 68% of parents said their kids regularly eat breakfast, while only 50% of kids said they regularly eat breakfast.

• Kids who skip meals have significantly higher body-mass indexes than kids who eat breakfast, lunch and dinner every day.

Nickelodeon said it will unveil a series of new public-service announcements later this month focused on the importance of starting the day by eating a balanced breakfast.

The first spot, "The Day the Earth Skipped Breakfast," addresses how eating breakfast provides energy and fuels muscles but skipping breakfast leads to bad temperaments and sluggish behavior.

The second spot, "It's Breakfast Time," animated by Klasky Csupo (Rugrats), features animated utensils rhyming and singing about breakfast foods as needed sources of energy for the start of the day.

The various PSAs will run throughout the day and additional spots will continue to roll out over the next few months, the network said.

“Kids are smart, and we have learned over the years that if you empower them with information, they will act on it," Nickelodeon Television president Cyma Zarghami said in a prepared statement. "The fact is that in today's hectic world, many kids are skipping breakfast. These spots will air daily right at breakfast time and will hopefully get more kids to the table."

September