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Body mass index cut offs to define thinness in children and adolescents: international survey

Body mass index cut offs to define thinness in children and adolescents: international survey
Body mass index cut offs to define thinness in children and adolescents: international survey
OBJECTIVE: To determine cut offs to define thinness in children and adolescents, based on body mass index at age 18 years.
DESIGN: International survey of six large nationally representative cross sectional studies on growth.
SETTING: Brazil, Great Britain, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, Singapore, and the United States.
SUBJECTS: 97 876 males and 94 851 females from birth to 25 years.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: Body mass index (BMI, weight/height(2)).
RESULTS: The World Health Organization defines grade 2 thinness in adults as BMI <17. This same cut off, applied to the six datasets at age 18 years, gave mean BMI close to a z score of -2 and 80% of the median. Thus it matches existing criteria for wasting in children based on weight for height. For each dataset, centile curves were drawn to pass through the cut off of BMI 17 at 18 years. The resulting curves were averaged to provide age and sex specific cut-off points from 2-18 years. Similar cut offs were derived based on BMI 16 and 18.5 at 18 years, together providing definitions of thinness grades 1, 2, and 3 in children and adolescents consistent with the WHO adult definitions.
CONCLUSIONS: The proposed cut-off points should help to provide internationally comparable prevalence rates of thinness in children and adolescents
great britain, world health, female, preschool, infant, health, netherlands, humans, prevalence, weight, age factors, thinness, child, cross-sectional studies, growth, reference standards, epidemiology, adult, newborn, height, adolescent, male, obesity, diagnosis, research, britain, birth, body mass index, london
0959-8138
1-8
Cole, Tim J.
78cebdf5-e360-4e8e-9dea-ba4b88306980
Flegal, Katherine M.
b6e6ed15-1eeb-473b-a95f-cb9b25b4e6f2
Nicholls, Dasha
3317ac5d-efdc-425f-a33f-eb157727fd8f
Jackson, Alan A.
c9a12d7c-b4d6-4c92-820e-890a688379ef
Cole, Tim J.
78cebdf5-e360-4e8e-9dea-ba4b88306980
Flegal, Katherine M.
b6e6ed15-1eeb-473b-a95f-cb9b25b4e6f2
Nicholls, Dasha
3317ac5d-efdc-425f-a33f-eb157727fd8f
Jackson, Alan A.
c9a12d7c-b4d6-4c92-820e-890a688379ef

Cole, Tim J., Flegal, Katherine M., Nicholls, Dasha and Jackson, Alan A. (2007) Body mass index cut offs to define thinness in children and adolescents: international survey. British Medical Journal, 335 (7612), 1-8. (doi:10.1136/bmj.39238.399444.55).

Record type: Article

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To determine cut offs to define thinness in children and adolescents, based on body mass index at age 18 years.
DESIGN: International survey of six large nationally representative cross sectional studies on growth.
SETTING: Brazil, Great Britain, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, Singapore, and the United States.
SUBJECTS: 97 876 males and 94 851 females from birth to 25 years.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: Body mass index (BMI, weight/height(2)).
RESULTS: The World Health Organization defines grade 2 thinness in adults as BMI <17. This same cut off, applied to the six datasets at age 18 years, gave mean BMI close to a z score of -2 and 80% of the median. Thus it matches existing criteria for wasting in children based on weight for height. For each dataset, centile curves were drawn to pass through the cut off of BMI 17 at 18 years. The resulting curves were averaged to provide age and sex specific cut-off points from 2-18 years. Similar cut offs were derived based on BMI 16 and 18.5 at 18 years, together providing definitions of thinness grades 1, 2, and 3 in children and adolescents consistent with the WHO adult definitions.
CONCLUSIONS: The proposed cut-off points should help to provide internationally comparable prevalence rates of thinness in children and adolescents

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More information

Published date: 28 July 2007
Additional Information: Research
Keywords: great britain, world health, female, preschool, infant, health, netherlands, humans, prevalence, weight, age factors, thinness, child, cross-sectional studies, growth, reference standards, epidemiology, adult, newborn, height, adolescent, male, obesity, diagnosis, research, britain, birth, body mass index, london

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 61005
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/61005
ISSN: 0959-8138
PURE UUID: 720f7ddd-37df-4f29-9c0a-6b66a913489e

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Date deposited: 29 Sep 2008
Last modified: 13 Mar 2019 20:29

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Contributors

Author: Tim J. Cole
Author: Katherine M. Flegal
Author: Dasha Nicholls
Author: Alan A. Jackson

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