Obesity

Neck Size can Determine Childhood Obesity

A recent study showed that by measuring neck circumference, doctors can estimate whether a child is overweight or obese. This new method grabbed the attention of researchers, as using BMI (body mass index) on children was not always an accurate indicator of obesity. This is because children are still growing and they are not yet fully developed. Read on to know more about using neck size to measure childhood obesity.

There are several more factors that can skew BMI include muscle mass and bone density. Thesefactors can cause statistics which can wrongly categorize some children as overweight or obese when in actuality, they are a healthy weight. The condition of obesity is connected to fat levels and fat deposits in the body. Different methods of determining and preventing childhood obesity should be considered for children. Neck size measurement is a novel method for determining childhood obesity.

Neck Size Measurement

This method was conceived by Dr. Olubukola Nafiu of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. By measuring neck circumference, doctors can thoroughly determine and check if the children are underweight, a healthy weight, overweight or obese. This method is a useful tool in estimating and preventing causes of childhood obesity.

Apart from helping doctors to determine childhood obesity, neck size measurements also help in spotting those children who have a higher risk of suffering from sleep apnea. This condition, sleep apnea, causes an individual to stop breathing in their sleep, causing them to often wake up gasping for breath. This is associated with a specific marking on the back of the neck, which can be identified by a doctor when measuring neck size.

The study proving neck circumference can indicate childhood obesity was conducted on 1,102 children and teens ranging from 6-18 years of age. These children were about to undergo surgery. Dr. Nafiu said that, since drugs concentrate in body fat, children with  a higher BMI will face more problems while waking up from anesthetics.

References

http://articles.cnn.com/2010-07-06/health/bmi.neck.fitness_1_bmi-obesity-related-neck-circumference

http://www.reuters.com/article/2010/07/06/us-neck-size-idUSTRE6653R320100706

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/neck-size/AN02117

http://www.webmd.com/parenting/news/20100706/neck-size-can-screen-kids-for-obesity

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