The New Growth Charts
The latest versions feature some important changes, resulting in more accurate measurements and a more global view of infants.
- They're more ethnically inclusive. The old growth charts, published in 1977, were based primarily on a survey of mostly white, formula-fed babies who were living in southwestern Ohio. The new charts , compiled by the Centers for Disease Control, in Atlanta, and the National Center for Health Statistics, in Hyattsville, Maryland, are more reflective of the increasingly diverse U.S. population.
- They list BMI. A major change is the inclusion of the BMI (body-mass index), numbers that evaluate a child's weight in relation to her height. The intention is to combat escalating childhood obesity by targeting at-risk children early on (as young as age 2, in some cases) and getting parents to provide their children with healthier and more well-balanced diets.