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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: DEVELOPMENT AND PREVENTION OF CHILDHOOD OBESITY

Location: Children's Nutrition Research Center

Title: Determining BMI cut points based on excess percent body fat in US children and adolescents

Authors
item Nguyen, Tuan -
item Butte, Nancy -
item Nicklas, Theresa -

Submitted to: Journal of Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: March 1, 2010
Publication Date: April 1, 2010
Citation: Nguyen, T.T., Butte, N.F., Nicklas, T.A. 2010. Determining BMI cut points based on excess percent body fat in US children and adolescents [abstract]. Journal of Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. 24:221.8.

Technical Abstract: Current cut points for overweight were derived statistically from BMI distribution. The study aimed at determining age-, gender-, and ethnic-specific BMI cut points based on excess body fat in US children and adolescents aged 8-17 years, who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES) 1999-2004. Excess body fat was defined as % body fat (25% in boys and 30% for girls). Receiver operating characteristic curves were used to define optimal BMI levels for excess % body fat by age, gender and ethnicity. Logarithmic regression across age groups was used to predict optimal BMI cut points. Sensitivities and specificities for the detection of elevated % body fat were compared with the 85th percentiles of the CDC BMI growth charts. Optimal BMI cut points increased with the order from non-Hispanic white, Mexican American, to non-Hispanic black boys; Mexican American, non-Hispanic-white, to non-Hispanic-black girls. Compared to the 85th percentiles of the CDC BMI growth charts, these optimal BMI cut points had lower sensitivities and higher specificities in boys (except for '10-year-old whites) and had higher sensitivities and lower specificities in girls (except for blacks). The ethic variation in optimal cut points based on excess % body fat suggests a more specific BMI guideline to identify children with excess body fat.

Last Modified: 8/27/2014
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