A new study has revealed nearly half of all Kiwis skip breakfast because of their busy lifestyles.

In a normal week almost half the nation skips breakfast even though 42 per cent of New Zealanders say they know breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

The survey by Belvita, which surveyed 1000 Kiwis, found that 46 per cent skip breakfast at least once a week and almost a third of breakfast skippers do it up to three times per week - due in large part to hectic lifestyles and time-poor families.

Nutritionist Ginny McArthur said: "The survey shows the impact that our busy lifestyle has on health and personality; breakfast is being sacrificed in favour of other morning priorities, resulting in nearly 80 per cent of Kiwis who skip breakfast feeling some negative effect by lunchtime, including lethargy, anger and difficulty concentrating.


"Aside from reduced workplace productivity, this means many Kiwis will find themselves reaching for unhealthy mid-morning snacks to counter the effects of skipping breakfast."

With nearly 40 per cent of New Zealanders eating breakfast on the run at least once a week, the survey findings suggest that for many Kiwis, breakfast is no longer the family occasion it once was.

Ms McArthur added: "Our hectic lifestyle means the tradition of sitting down to breakfast at the kitchen table is evolving into a breakfast-on-the-go trend.

"The research replicated the same questions as a recent Australian study so that comparisons between the two markets could be made.

"The key difference between the breakfast eating habits of Kiwis and Aussies is that Kiwis don't skip breakfast as often as the Australian population (46 per cent versus 56 per cent), but those who do forgo this meal, skip more often in a week.''

* New Zealanders who acknowledge that breakfast is the most important meal of the day: 42 per cent

* New Zealanders who sometimes skip breakfast because they are disorganised: 50 per cent

* New Zealanders who admit to being negatively affected by the time they reach lunch: 79 per cent

* New Zealanders who opting for the speedier alternative of eating on-the-run: 39 per cent

* New Zealanders who miss breakfast because they were too busy helping their child or partner get ready for their day: 25 per cent

* Minutes spent preparing and eating breakfast (when they have it): 8.3 minutes