It isn’t always easy to tell if your child is overweight.

They grow so fast, it seems like their pants are always too short or their shirts are too small.

Most parents have a hard time noticing when their own kids are carrying too much weight. But the good news is, doctors have an easy way of measuring if a child is underweight or overweight. It’s called body mass index (BMI).

Your child’s BMI is based on his or her age, sex, height and weight. It helps doctors figure out if your child is underweight, normal weight, overweight or obese.

How to measure your child’s body mass index

Here is a website where you can see where your child’s weight falls: Stanford Childrens BMI Calculator for Children and Teens

This chart is only a starting point. Every child’s body grows differently. A doctor is the best person to help you figure out if your child’s weight is healthy.

If your child’s BMI is above the normal range, or if you have other worries about his or her weight, your pediatrician or family doctor can help.

Getting help from your doctor

Your doctor can help you understand if your child’s weight is healthy or not. And if it isn’t, they can help you come up with a plan to get your child back to a healthy weight.

And it doesn’t have to be hard.

I like to remind parents that there are lots of simple ways to help kids exercise and eat better without totally changing your family’s lifestyle. I know in my own family, cooking and sharing good food is an important part of spending time together. Helping your child lose weight doesn’t have to mean giving all of this up.

Your doctor can help find a balance that works for you and your children.

 

If you are worried about your child’s weight, schedule an appointment with a Vecino pediatrician or doctor.

Dr. Juan Olivares, Jr.,

Director of Pediatrics, Vecino Health Centers