Our expert says:
The BMI (Basic Metabolic Index) which can be used as a measure of overweight and obesity is also used. Square your daughter's height in metres and then divide her weight in kg by the answer.
Let's say your 9-year-old daughter is 1.32 m tall and weighs 38 kg, then this is how you do the calculation: 1.32 x 1.32 = 1.74.
Then divide 38 by 1.74 = 21,83. The cut-off point for overweight in 9-year-old girls is 19.07 and for obesity it is 22.81, so in this example, the child is overweight (her BMI is higher than 19.07), but not yet obese (her BMI is lower than 22.81). If you do the calculation for your lassie and find that she is overweight or obese, it is advisable to have her assessed by a clinical dietitian (visit the Association for Dietetics in SA Website at: www.adsa.org.za and click on "Find a Dietitian" to find a dietitian in your area).
The dietitian will also assist you with a slimming diet for children which helps with weightloss, but still permits normal growth. Combine the diet with plenty of daily exercise because experts agree that exercise is one of the most powerful factors in reducing weight in children.
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