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Trend in adults who rarely have time to eat breakfast in Great Britain 2005-2017

Breakfast is often referred to as the most important meal of the day, yet in 2017, nearly one in two Brits said they rarely had time to eat a proper breakfast. Between 2005 and 2017, the highest share of British people found time to eat breakfast during 2009, with 2005 finding the highest share (56 percent) of British adults rushing out the door without having a proper breakfast. One possible negative effect of skipping breakfast can be the disruption of our inner body clock.

Breakfast habits

A little more than two thirds of people in the UK eat their breakfast at home every day of the week. However, eight percent said they did not eat breakfast at home even once in the week prior to the interview. The trend towards healthier food has not spared the British breakfast table and almost two thirds said they changed their breakfast on weekdays to be more healthy. This, together with the high amounts of sugar found in some cereals, may explain the recent drop in cereal purchases. Furthermore, the number of people who heavily rely on cereals for their breakfast is declining.

Cereal brands

Kellogg’s products are the most commonly eaten cereal brand in the UK, although the brand has lost some consumers favor since 2015. Currently the only winners, in terms of consumer numbers on the market seem to be own brand products that are either Tesco products or come from supermarkets not among the big four.

Share of British adults who "rarely have time to eat a proper breakfast" in Great Britain from 2005 to 2017*

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Release date

June 2017


United Kingdom (Great Britain)

Survey time period

2005 to 2017

Number of respondents


Age group

16 years and older

Method of interview

Face-to-face interview

Supplementary notes

* Data represents the share of respondents reporting that the statement "I rarely have time to eat a proper breakfast" applies to them personally 'a lot' or 'a little'.
** 2017 survey. n (2015) = 1009. n (2013)= 1,029. Number of survey respondents from 2005 to 2011 not specified.

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