Digestive System

Metabolism and Nutrition

Evaluating BMI in Children and Teenagers Ages 2 to 20

Body mass index (BMI) is a number that shows body weight adjusted for height. The formula to calculate BMI is: BMI = (weight in pounds×703)/(height in inches)2.

The BMI for children and teens (ages 2 to 20) is age-and gender-specific. Healthcare professionals use established percentile cutoff points to identify underweight and overweight children. The percentile indicates the relative position of the child’s BMI relative to children of the same sex and age.

BMI Weight Status
BMI-for-age < 5th=""> Underweight
BMI-for-age 5th percentile to < 85th=""> Normal
BMI-for-age 85th percentile to < 95th=""> At risk of being overweight
BMI-for-age = 95th percentile Overweight


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