Healthy Weight For Children - What You Need To Know!

Healthy Weight

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Are you worried whether your child’s weight is healthy or not? Do you feel your child is eating healthy but may not have the ideal weight? Do you want to measure your child’s ideal weight according to height and age and know how to improve it if needed?

If you are looking at any of the above questions, read on to find more on healthy weight for children and what your child’s ideal weight should be.

What Is BMI?

BMI is the short form of Body Mass Index. It is a measurement that is used to calculate your child’s weight and height. It can accurately tell you the amount of fat that your child has in his body and correlates to the direct measure of your child’s body fat. In case of your child, BMI will be age and gender specific and is mostly referred to as BMI for age.

What Is BMI Percentile?

Once the BMI is calculated, the BMI number is measured on BMI for age charts to get a percentile ranking. It is the most common indicator to check the size and growth pattern of your child. The growth chart will show you whether your child is underweight, has a healthy weight, is overweight or is obese.

[ Read: Iron Rich Foods For Kids ]

How To Use BMI For Your Child?

BMI calculator is recommended to be used from children who are two years and above. BMI will not clearly indicate whether your child is healthy or not. Your child may have a high BMI count as per his age and gender. To understand whether or not he has any excess weight and how much excess weight can cause a health issue, you should get your child diagnosed by a health care provider. The doctor may check for other factors like the measurements of skinfold thickness, evaluation of your child’s diet, your child’s family medical and health history, your child’s level of physical activity and other such related health screenings. [1]

Before you calculate your child’s BMI, you have to accurately measure the height and weight at home. Here is how you can do it at home:

[ Read: Best Nutritious Foods For Kids ]

How To Measure A Child’s Healthy Weight Accurately At Home:

  • To measure your child’s weight at home, use a digital scale. Do not use a bathroom scale that is loaded with spring. Place it on the floor on a firm surface without a carpet or a rug. [3]
  • Make sure your child removes any shoes or heavy clothing like jackets or sweaters.
  • Your child has to stand with both the feet in the center of the weighing scale.
  • You have to record your healthy child weight accurately to the nearest decimal fraction.

[ Read: Healthy Food For Children To Gain Weight ]

How To Calculate And Interpret BMI For Your Child:

As per the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), it is recommended that you use the Body Mass Index (BMI) to check for obesity and overweight numbers if your child is between the ages of 2 and 19.

Follow the steps mentioned below to rightfully calculate and interpret your child’s BMI count by using the BMI Percentile Calculator:

  • Check your child’s accurate height and weight by following the steps mentioned above.
  • Next, calculate your child’s BMI and percentile by following the child BMI calculator here.
  • Now check the BMI for age percentile that you calculated according to the results. The BMI for age percentile will help to interpret the BMI number because it is both gender and age specific. The age and gender criteria are taken into consideration because the amount of body fat changes as per age. Also, the amount of body fat is different for boys and girls.
  • Check the information shared below to find the weight status category according to the calculated BMI for age percentile.
Weight Status CategoryPercentile Range
UnderweightLess than the 5th percentile
Healthy weight5th percentile to less than the 85th percentile
Overweight85th to less than the 95th percentile
ObeseEqual to or greater than the 95th percentile

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Ideal Healthy Weight Chart For Children:

Average Height And Weights for Boys
AgeAverage HeightAverage Weight
1 Year Old28-29 inches22 lbs
13 Months22.27 Pounds
14 Months22.82 Pounds
15 Months23.26 Pounds
16 Months23.7 Pounds
17 Months24.14 Pounds
18 Months24.58 Pounds
19 Months25.02 Pounds
20 Months25.35 Pounds
21 Months25.79 Pounds
22 Months26.12 Pounds
23 Months26.57 Pounds
2 Years Old31 inches28.4 lbs
3 Years Old33 inches33 lbs
4 Years Old37 inches35-37 lbs
5 Years Old40 inches41.8 lbs
6 Years Old42 inches46.2 lbs
7 Years Old44 inches50.6 lbs
8 Years Old45 inches57.2 lbs
9 Years Old49 inches61.6 lbs
10 Years Old51 inches70.4 lbs
11 Years Old52 inches77 lbs
Average Height And Weight For Girls
AgeAverage HeightAverage Weight
1 Year Old28-29inches21.76 lbs.
13 Months22.27 Pounds
14 Months22.82 Pounds
15 Months23.26 Pounds
16 Months23.7 Pounds
17 Months24.14 Pounds
18 Months24.58 Pounds
19 Months25.02 Pounds
20 Months25.35 Pounds
21 Months25.79 Pounds
22 Months26.12 Pounds
23 Months26.57 Pounds
2 Years Old30 inches28.4 lbs.
3 Years Old33 inches30.8 lbs.
4 Years Old37 inches35.2 lbs.
5 Years Old40 inches39.6 lbs.
6 Years Old41 inches46.2 lbs.
7 Years Old43 inches50.6 lbs.
8 Years Old45 inches57.2 lbs.
9 Years Old47 inches63.8 lbs.
10 Years Old51 inches70.4 lbs.
11 Years Old52 inches79.2 lbs.

Tips To Help Your Child Maintain A Healthy Weight:

If you are trying to help your child lose some weight, then ignore the diet books and use your instincts instead. Try to bring small changes in his diet and lifestyle. Here are some tips and guidelines that can help your child lose weight in a healthy way.

1. Adopt A Healthy Lifestyle:

Encourage the whole family to embrace a healthy lifestyle. Take out time to eat together at the table. According to a study, kids who eat with their family are less likely to be overweight.

2. Serve Fruits And Vegetables:

Serve your child five to six serving of fruits every day. Serve them a healthy breakfast rich in fruits, grain and milk products. For snacks, serve fruits and raw vegetables with yogurt. Do not let them eat junk food. You can also pack a few fruits for his tiffin.

[ Read: Effects Of Junk Food On Children ]

3. Eliminate Sugary Beverages:

Eliminate sugary beverages like sports drinks, coffee and soda from your child’s diet. Limit fruit juice intake to not more than one serving a day. Make sure your child drinks loads of water daily. Teach your child to start his day with a glass of water. Bring this change gradually, not abruptly.

[ Read: Fruit Salad Recipe For Kids ]

4. Encourage Your Child To Be Physically Active:

Encourage your child to be physically active. Kids have plenty of choices when it comes to exercise and activity. They can take part in any sports or dance. Ask them to help you clean the house or rake the leaves. It is also a kind of physical activity. Reduce your child’s time in front of the computer, television and video games by an hour every day.

5. Give Him A Balanced Diet:

Make sure your child consumes a balanced diet. It will help your child get the essential nutrients in the adequate quantity. Give him a variety of healthy meal options so that he does not get bored eating the same foods daily. A balanced diet must include fruits, vegetables, Milk, Dairy Products, Meat, Nuts, and Grains, especially whole-grain foods.

If your child wants to lose weight, then you can also seek your doctor’s help. The doctor will check your child’s body mass index to estimate how much weight he needs to shed. Doctors never recommend cutting on food for kids. He will explain to you how your child can reduce calories and yet get all the necessary nutrients. He might also suggest your child to watch his portion sizes.

Follow the steps mentioned above to calculate your child’s BMI and also to ensure that your child is able to maintain a healthy weight.

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Debolina Raja