Expanding definitions of obesity may harm children

Ray Moynihan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleProfessional

13 Citations (Scopus)


A new and expanded definition of childhood overweight and obesity expected later this year is causing concerns that many healthy children may be unnecessarily labelled as having a disease.

A powerful “expert committee” in the United States has tentatively decided to reclassify children who are currently called “at risk of overweight” and refer to them in the future as “overweight.” Those familiar with these definitions say that such a change could lead to a dramatic expansion of prevalence estimates, with 25% of American toddlers and almost 40% of children aged 6 to 11 years portrayed as having a medical condition called “overweight and obese.”
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1412-1412
Number of pages1
JournalBMJ (Clinical research ed.)
Issue number7555
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jun 2006


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