Regular food consumption plays a critical role in normal glucose homeostasis. Today, a few studies have evaluated the level of fasting glucose in individuals who skip breakfast, which should theoretically lead to a lack of supplementary energy and thereby increase the risk for subsequent hypoglycemia. The prevalence of suspected habitual skipping breakfast (SHSB) (at least three times weekly) was evaluated with a simple question, along with measurement of fasting plasma glucose level and assessment of cardiovascular and lifestyle risk factors in a cross-sectional study of 2,331 asymptomatic adults who had never been treated with insulin or oral anti-diabetic drugs. The overall prevalence of SHSB was 16.3% (20.1% for men and 9.4% for women, P<0.0001, χ2-test). Compared with a normal fasting glucose level, an impaired fasting glucose (IFG) level (100–125 mg/dl), but not high fasting glucose (≥126 mg/dl), was significantly associated with SHSB, and this association remained after adjustment for relevant confounders [odds ratio (95% CI): 1.75 (1.33–2.30) and 2.10 (0.93–4.71), respectively]. Age (inversely), current smoker, late dinner just before sleeping, infrequent exercise, and high C-reactive protein (≥1.8 mg/L) were independently associated with SHSB. In a subgroup of subjects who underwent a 75g-oral glucose tolerance test (n = 1,315), isolated IFG (n = 272) was solely significantly associated with SHSB. Our results suggest that IFG, subtle inflammatory state, and high-risk lifestyle factors for diabetes and cardiovascular disease may have an association in asymptomatic adults who habitually skip breakfast.
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