How many times have you noticed the movie cliché where a well-meaning parent makes their kid a full, well-balanced meal, only to see him grab a piece of toast and run out the door? It’s a stereotype for a reason. As it turns out, people are still skipping out on breakfast, even though nutritionists and food scientists have warned us that it’s a bad idea. According to a new study from Instantly that surveyed 10,000 people, more than 53 percent of Americans skip breakfast at least once a week, and 12 percent never have breakfast. Why is that? According to the survey, we are overwhelmingly “not hungry in the morning,” or simply don’t have time to eat.
Out of the Americans who do eat breakfast, convenience is key. Almost half eat something on the go: Forty-five percent get their breakfast from a fast food place (maybe going for those new avocado McMuffins), and 27 percent opting for a coffee shop meal.
“In the U.S., with longer work days that break out of the 9 to 5 model, timing and convenience has become a deciding factor in what many Americans eat in the morning,” said Andy Jolls, chief marketing officer at Instantly. “But that doesn’t mean demand for breakfast foods is low. If companies can provide breakfast in a format that accommodates busy schedules while appealing to taste and nutrition, they could see significant incremental growth.”
Breakfast is by far, however, the most skipped meal of the day. Forty percent of survey respondents go straight to lunch, while just 39 percent skip dinner or lunch, combined. When we do eat breakfast, the most popular foods are by far eggs and cereal, with almost half of all survey respondents pouring a bowl or scrambling some eggs in the morning.