Limitations of the current World Health Organization growth references for children and adolescents

Youfa Wang, Luis A. Moreno, Benjamin H Caballero, Tim J. Cole

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Since the 1970s, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended the use of the growth references developed by the United States National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) based on national survey data collected in the 1960s and 1970s. These references are known as the WHO or NCHS/WHO growth references. Over the past three decades, the WHO or NCHS/WHO growth references have played an important role internationally in the assessment of child and adolescent growth and nutritional status. However, the references have a number of weaknesses. The limitations of the infant portion of the references were thoroughly assessed in WHO's effort to develop a new international growth reference for infants and preschool children. The present report discusses the limitations of the NCHS/WHO references for school-aged children and adolescents, including a number of conceptual, methodological, and practical problems. The global obesity epidemic poses another challenge that the NCHS/WHO reference cannot appropriately meet. There is a need for a single international reference to assess the nutritional status and growth of school-aged children and adolescents across different countries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalFood and Nutrition Bulletin
Volume27
Issue number4 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Dec 2006

Fingerprint

World Health Organization
WHO
National Center for Health Statistics (U.S.)
health statistics
adolescent
Growth
nutritional status
Nutritional Status
infant
obesity
preschool children
national surveys
Preschool Children
preschool child
school
National Center for Health Statistics
health
statistics
Obesity

Keywords

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Growth reference
  • International
  • Limitation
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

Cite this

Limitations of the current World Health Organization growth references for children and adolescents. / Wang, Youfa; Moreno, Luis A.; Caballero, Benjamin H; Cole, Tim J.

In: Food and Nutrition Bulletin, Vol. 27, No. 4 SUPPL., 12.2006.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{65d50c7eaa8c4b6bbab182db635b0c83,
title = "Limitations of the current World Health Organization growth references for children and adolescents",
abstract = "Since the 1970s, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended the use of the growth references developed by the United States National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) based on national survey data collected in the 1960s and 1970s. These references are known as the WHO or NCHS/WHO growth references. Over the past three decades, the WHO or NCHS/WHO growth references have played an important role internationally in the assessment of child and adolescent growth and nutritional status. However, the references have a number of weaknesses. The limitations of the infant portion of the references were thoroughly assessed in WHO's effort to develop a new international growth reference for infants and preschool children. The present report discusses the limitations of the NCHS/WHO references for school-aged children and adolescents, including a number of conceptual, methodological, and practical problems. The global obesity epidemic poses another challenge that the NCHS/WHO reference cannot appropriately meet. There is a need for a single international reference to assess the nutritional status and growth of school-aged children and adolescents across different countries.",
keywords = "Adolescent, Child, Growth reference, International, Limitation, Obesity",
author = "Youfa Wang and Moreno, {Luis A.} and Caballero, {Benjamin H} and Cole, {Tim J.}",
year = "2006",
month = "12",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "27",
journal = "Food and Nutrition Bulletin",
issn = "0379-5721",
publisher = "United Nations University Press",
number = "4 SUPPL.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Limitations of the current World Health Organization growth references for children and adolescents

AU - Wang, Youfa

AU - Moreno, Luis A.

AU - Caballero, Benjamin H

AU - Cole, Tim J.

PY - 2006/12

Y1 - 2006/12

N2 - Since the 1970s, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended the use of the growth references developed by the United States National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) based on national survey data collected in the 1960s and 1970s. These references are known as the WHO or NCHS/WHO growth references. Over the past three decades, the WHO or NCHS/WHO growth references have played an important role internationally in the assessment of child and adolescent growth and nutritional status. However, the references have a number of weaknesses. The limitations of the infant portion of the references were thoroughly assessed in WHO's effort to develop a new international growth reference for infants and preschool children. The present report discusses the limitations of the NCHS/WHO references for school-aged children and adolescents, including a number of conceptual, methodological, and practical problems. The global obesity epidemic poses another challenge that the NCHS/WHO reference cannot appropriately meet. There is a need for a single international reference to assess the nutritional status and growth of school-aged children and adolescents across different countries.

AB - Since the 1970s, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended the use of the growth references developed by the United States National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) based on national survey data collected in the 1960s and 1970s. These references are known as the WHO or NCHS/WHO growth references. Over the past three decades, the WHO or NCHS/WHO growth references have played an important role internationally in the assessment of child and adolescent growth and nutritional status. However, the references have a number of weaknesses. The limitations of the infant portion of the references were thoroughly assessed in WHO's effort to develop a new international growth reference for infants and preschool children. The present report discusses the limitations of the NCHS/WHO references for school-aged children and adolescents, including a number of conceptual, methodological, and practical problems. The global obesity epidemic poses another challenge that the NCHS/WHO reference cannot appropriately meet. There is a need for a single international reference to assess the nutritional status and growth of school-aged children and adolescents across different countries.

KW - Adolescent

KW - Child

KW - Growth reference

KW - International

KW - Limitation

KW - Obesity

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=33845905248&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=33845905248&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

VL - 27

JO - Food and Nutrition Bulletin

JF - Food and Nutrition Bulletin

SN - 0379-5721

IS - 4 SUPPL.

ER -