Raising Fit Kids: Healthy Weight

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What is the "5" rule for keeping a healthy body mass index (BMI) percentile?

ANSWER

Experts recommend that kids of all ages and all weight categories follow these healthy guidelines to keep weight in check. It's easy to remember them as 5-2-1-0 every day.

  • 5: Everyone in your family needs five servings of vegetables and fruits a day.
  • 2: Limit TV-watching to no more than 2 hours a day. Family members who use other "screens" get less TV time.
  • 1: Get 1 hour of physical activity.
  • 0: That's how many sugar-sweetened beverages you should have a day.

From: What Parents Should Know About BMI WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Lawrence Cheskin, MD, associate professor, Johns Hopkins Medical School; director, Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center, Baltimore.

William H. Dietz, MD, PhD, director, division of nutrition, physical activity, and obesity, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, CDC, Atlanta.

Karen Donato, SM, coordinator, overweight and obesity research applications, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD.

Dan Kirschenbaum, PhD, vice president, clinical services, Wellspring -- a Division of CRC Health; director, Center for Behavioral Medicine & Sport Psychology, Chicago; professor, psychiatry and behavioral sciences, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago.

Ann O. Scheimann, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics, Johns Hopkins Children's Center, Baltimore.

CDC: "About BMI for Children and Teens."

CRC Health Group: My Overweight Child: "Knowing When to Intervene in the Life an Overweight Child."

Barlow, S. , 2007. Pediatrics

Healthy Children.org: "Is Your Child Overweight?"

Freedman, D. , September, 2009. Pediatrics

"Expert Committee Recommendations of the Assessment, Prevention and Treatment of Child and Adolescent Overweight & Obesity," 2007.

Reviewed by Renee A. Alli on February 13, 2018

SOURCES:

Lawrence Cheskin, MD, associate professor, Johns Hopkins Medical School; director, Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center, Baltimore.

William H. Dietz, MD, PhD, director, division of nutrition, physical activity, and obesity, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, CDC, Atlanta.

Karen Donato, SM, coordinator, overweight and obesity research applications, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD.

Dan Kirschenbaum, PhD, vice president, clinical services, Wellspring -- a Division of CRC Health; director, Center for Behavioral Medicine & Sport Psychology, Chicago; professor, psychiatry and behavioral sciences, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago.

Ann O. Scheimann, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics, Johns Hopkins Children's Center, Baltimore.

CDC: "About BMI for Children and Teens."

CRC Health Group: My Overweight Child: "Knowing When to Intervene in the Life an Overweight Child."

Barlow, S. , 2007. Pediatrics

Healthy Children.org: "Is Your Child Overweight?"

Freedman, D. , September, 2009. Pediatrics

"Expert Committee Recommendations of the Assessment, Prevention and Treatment of Child and Adolescent Overweight & Obesity," 2007.

Reviewed by Renee A. Alli on February 13, 2018

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How can you keep your child at a healthy weight?

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