Introduction: Globalization has favored intra-European Commission (EC) and extra-EC migration to Spain. One of the most numerous cultural groups that have settled in the southern Spain is from Romania. Coexistence, especially in schools, has made us become interested in knowing the eating habits at breakfast of Romanian and Spanish populations. Numerous studies show that the food intake at breakfast, mostly made before leaving home, has an incidence on the physic wellbeing of adolescent throughout the day. The processes of acculturation are also inseparable from the eating habits, health and life, that maintain the migrant teenagers. Breakfast is analyzed as one of the habits more associated with diet quality; paradoxically, one of the findings of our study, many adolescents do not take a proper breakfast every day.
Objectives: The study analyzes the characteristics and the main cultural and gender differences in the implementation of breakfast: its maintenance or omission in young autochthonous and immigrants of Romanian origin in the southeast Spanish schools. Design. This is a cross-sectional study with a cluster sampling in two Primary schools and seven Secondary schools. The instrument applied was an adaptation of the KIDSCREEN-27 questionnaire. Sample. It has been formed by 1472 students between 11 and 18 years old; nationality: 1315 were Spanish and 157 were Romanians. Data analysis. Descriptive and differential analyses using the chi-square and U of Mann-Whitney statistics.
Results: In the study we identified 1.2% of Spaniards and 3.3% of Romanians who either skip breakfast or do not eat foods throughout the morning. The main breakfast foods of the Spanish students are dairy, bread and cereals, cookies, juice and olive oil; for the Romanian students the basic foods at breakfast are cereals, dairy products, juices, biscuits and jams. We have found significant differences between the two compared cultural groups. We also found significant differences between the food eaten by men of the two cultural groups (Spanish and Romanian) and by the food eaten by women (Spanish and Romanian) in the breakfast food.
Conclusions: The results show the need to further promote and implement educational programs that encourage students to make breakfast before leaving home. Also, it is necessary, they take care of the intake of the right foods to start the day and contemplate this habit from a transcultural and gender approach. Significant differences were identified in the breakfast practice food by both genders and cultural groups.