Growth and maturity status of black and white children classified as obese by different criteria

Authors

  • Robert M. Malina,

    1. Department of Anthropology, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78712
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  • Michael F. Skrabanek,

    1. Department of Anthropology, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78712
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  • Dr. Bertis B. Little

    1. Department of Anthropology, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78712
    Current affiliation:
    1. Division of Clinical Genetics, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Taxes Health Science Center at Dallas, Dallas, Texas
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Abstract

Weight, stature, bicondylar and biepicondylar breadths, estimated midarm muscle circumference, grip strength, and skeletal maturity were compared in 111 obese Black and 120 obese White children, 6 through 12 years of age. The children were classified as obese by the triceps skinfold (TSF), body mass index (BMI), or both, and were labeled, respectively as TSF Obese, BMI Obese, and BMI+TSF Obese. The anthropmetric dimensions, including grip strength, were transformed to z scores on the basis of age-, sex-, and race-specific means and standard deviations for a mixed longitudinal sample of children among whom the obese children were indentified. Skeletal maturityu was expressed as the diference between skeletal age (Tanner-Whitehouse II RUS method) and chronological age. Within each racial group, BMI+TSF Obese are heavier and taller, have larger extremity bone widths, have larger estimated midarm musculature, are stronger, and are more advanced in skeletal maturity than TSF Obese and average nonobese children. Although the number of children classified as BMI Obese is small, their apparently unique characteristic is an especially large estimated midarm muscle circumference compared to other obese children.

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