104 Pounds And 5'6" - Is My Weight Unhealthy?

Published: January 07, 2015
Dear 104 Pounds And 5'6" - Is My Weight Unhealthy?,

I am 5 feet and 6 inches tall, and I weigh 104 pounds. I can wrap both my hands around my thighs, and my arms and very small. I am 14 years old and I am male. Am I unhealthy?


Dear 104 Pounds And 5'6" - Is My Weight Unhealthy?,

TeenHealthFX calculated your BMI (Body Mass Index)  using the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Child and Teen BMI Calculator and found that you have a BMI of 16.8, placing you at the BMI-for-age at the 13th percentile for 14 year old boys. Your BMI calculation indicates that you are at a healthy weight.

So what does this mean? Well, according to the CDC:

BMI is calculated using your child’s weight and height and is then used to find the corresponding BMI-for-age percentile for your child’s age and sex.

BMI-for-age percentile shows how your child’s weight compares to that of other children of the same age and sex. For example, a BMI-for-age percentile of 65% means that the child’s weight is greater than that of 65% of other children of the same age and sex.

Based on the height and weight entered, the BMI is 16.8, placing the BMI-for-age at the 13th percentile for boys aged 14 years 0 months. This child has a healthy weight.

Maintaining a healthy weight throughout childhood and adolescence may reduce the risk of becoming overweight or obese as an adult.

What should you do with this information? According to the CDC:

Regardless of the current BMI-for-age category, help your child or teen develop healthy weight habits and talk with your health care professional as part of ongoing tracking of BMI-for-age. If your child has significant weight loss or gain he or she should be referred to and guided by a health professional.

Practice healthy weight habits

Encourage children and teens to practice healthy weight habits by:

  • Eating healthy foods and beverages including water

  • Participating in physical activity on most (preferably all) days of the week

  • Getting adequate sleep

  • Limiting television viewing

    For more information, see Tips to Promote Healthy Eating and Physical Activity for Children and Teens.

    The CDC also recommends the following:

    Check BMI-for-age annually, or more often if recommended by the child’s healthcare provider. Tracking growth patterns over time can help you make sure your child is achieving or maintaining a healthy weight. A single BMI-for-age calculation is not enough to evaluate long-term weight status because height and weight change with growth. If your child has significant weight loss or gain he or she should be referred to and guided by a health professional.

    Please keep in mind that this BMI calculator is not meant to serve as a source of clinical guidance and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Since BMI is based on weight and height, it is only an indicator of body fatness. Individuals with the same BMI may have different amounts of body fat. Persons may consider seeking advice from their health-care providers on healthy weight status and to consider individual circumstances.

     

    As stated above by the CDC, a BMI calculation is not meant as a substitute for medical care from your doctor. If you have questions or concerns about your weight, then it is important for you to speak to your primary care physician or an adolescent medicine specialist. If you don't have a doctor and live in northern New Jersey, you can call the Adolescent/Young Adult Center for Health at 973-971-5199 for an appointment with an adolescent medicine specialist or contact your local teen health center. You can also contact your insurance company for a list of in-network providers.

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