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Posted on Apr 19, 2022

How do I know if my child is overweight ?

Being able to know if your child is overweight isn’t always that easy. Children grow at different rates & at different times. Moreover, the amount of body fat in a child changes with age & differs between boys & girls.

1 way to know if our child is overweight is a calculation of his/her BMI or body mass index. It is a measurement of body weight relevant to height. BMI calculator uses formula which produces a score, which is often used to specify if an individual is of normal weight, underweight, overweight or even obese. BMI of a child is age specific & sex specific & known as BMI-for-age.

BMI-for-age considers growth charts. Doctors use the charts for tracking the growth of a child. The charts use percentile (a number) for showing the comparison of a child’s BMI with that of other children. The main categories of BMI for teens and children are:

  • Healthy weight- 5th to 84th percentile
  • Overweight- 85th to 94th percentile
  • Obese- 95th percentile or even higher

Our concern

We shall be concerned if our child has extra weight as weighing too much could raise te possibility that our children would develop health issues at present or later.

In short term, for example, she or he could have breathing issues or joint pain, hence making it tough to keep up with their friends. Some kids could develop health issues like type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Some kids also could experience bullying, teasing, low self esteem or depression.

Children who overweigh are at greater risk of entering adulthood with excessive weight. The possibilities of developing health issues like cardiac diseases 7 certain types of cancer are more among adults with excessive weight.

BMI merely screens & doesn’t measure the body fat directly or measure risk of health issues of an individual child. If we are concerned regarding the weight of our children, we shall consult with a doctor. They can check our children’s overall growth and health over time & tells us if the weight management could help. Many kids who still grow in length do not require to loose weight, they may require to decrease the weight they gain during the phase when they grow taller. We shall not put our children on a weight loss diet unless the doctors of our children tells us to.