Assessment of Overweight and Obesity in Childhood

Precise methods of estimating body fat are complicated and expensive. There are no accepted age-related 'norms' for percentage body weight as fat in childhood. For these reasons, anthropometric indices involving weight and height are widely used to estimate relative fatness. Such methods are relatively simple, noninvasive, well tolerated, and can be used in clinical practice and large population studies. However, they provide only indirect measures of fatness.

Weight can be related to height and age in various ways. Until recently, there was no consensus

Table 1 Percentage of body weight as fat at different ages in childhood

Age (years)

% body weight as fat

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