Do Israeli children's anthropometrics comply with world health organization and U.S. Centers for disease control and prevention height and body mass index tables?

Uri Gabbay, Doron Carmi, Aviva Mimouni-Bloch, Bat El Goldstein, Lital Keinan-Boker, Joseph Meyerovitch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Evaluation of children's anthropometrics poses challenges due to age-related changes. The main focus is on height and weight. However, since weight is height-dependent, body mass index (BMI) is the best surrogate measurement of adiposity. Israel has not developed national growth tables; therefore, researchers and clinicians utilize either World Health Organization (WHO) or U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) tables as benchmarks. Objectives: To evaluate the anthropometrics of Israeli children benchmarked by CDC and WHO tables. Methods: A retrospective review was conducted of the 1987-2003 birth cohort (age 4-18 years) from Clalit Health Services databases. Anthropometrics were retrieved twice: at study entry and one year later. We evaluated them as separate cohorts. Gender-specific age-matched median height and BMI were compared with CDC and WHO height and BMI tables. Results: The study consisted of 15,650, mean age at study entry 9.5 years (range 4-18). Gender-specific median heights of the Israeli children were similar to CDC and WHO values at younger ages, but were slightly shorter than the age-matched CDC and WHO toward the age of final height in both cohorts. However, gender-specific median BMI was considerably and statistically significant higher compared to CDC and WHO values consistently along the entire age range in both cohorts. Conclusions: Israeli children were slightly shorter toward the age of final height, compared to WHO and CDC. However, BMI in Israeli children was significantly higher compared to the CDC and WHO consistently along the age range, which raises an alarm regarding obesity patterns.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-238
Number of pages6
JournalIsrael Medical Association Journal
Volume23
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Israel Medical Association. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Body mass index (BMI)
  • Growth
  • Height
  • Obesity
  • Standard deviation score (SDS)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (all)

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