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  • Is Your Child's Height and Weight Normal For His Age? What You Need To Know

    It's amazing watching your toddler grow. But it’s important to know whether or not your child’s on track.
    by Kaydee Dela Buena .
Is Your Child's Height and Weight Normal For His Age? What You Need To Know
PHOTO BY iStock
  • As parents, it’s normal to be concerned about your child’s growth. By age two, the rate of growth decreases and the child begins to lose the appearance of a baby and builds more muscles. While each child is unique, a healthy toddler should continue to grow at a steady pace supported by good nutrition, adequate sleep, and exercise.

    Average height and weight for a kid

    According to the World Health Organization, the average weight for a 2-year-old is 26.5 pounds for girls and 27.5 pounds for boys. As for the height, a 2-year-old girl should be at least 33.5 inches tall, while boys measure up to 34.2 inches.

    “The ideal body weight of a 2-year old is approximately four times his or her birth weight. For children aged 2 to 6 years old, the ideal body weight can be computed as follows: (age in years x 2) + 8. For example, we have a 2-year old child with an actual weight of 11kg. The ideal body weight is 12 kg as: (2 years old x 2) + 8 = 12,” shares Dr. Phoebe Grande from the Department of Health-Philippine Center for Specialized Health Care in an interview with SmartParenting.com.ph.

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    Of course, these are still subjective which is why it’s customary to have your child undergo a routine checkup with a pediatrician. Results are plotted using a growth chart, which lets the doctor spot any trends that need attention. 

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    The use of growth charts

    Growth charts give you a general idea of your child’s development. It uses percentiles to compare your toddler’s growth in comparison to other toddlers of the same age group and sex.

    The National Nutrition Council (NCC) has put together a chart for children ages 0 to 71 months (or just below 6 years old) to check if they're growing enough in terms of weight and height. It is based on the WHO's Child Growth Standards and is available for download on their website.

    National Nutrition Council's Child Growth Standards Weight (kg) for Age of Girls 0-24 Months reference table.
    PHOTO BY courtesy of National Nutrition Council
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    Keep in mind that the numbers in these charts are just a benchmark. Your child may measure above or lower than the average — and this doesn’t mean there’s something wrong!

    National Nutrition Council's Child Growth Standards Weight (kg) for Age of Boys 0-24 Months reference table
    PHOTO BY courtesy of National Nutrition Council
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    Despite data collected from growth charts, it’s still difficult to define what’s actually deemed as “normal.” because there are numerous external factors to consider still. 

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    External factors that affect growth

    Most of the time, your child’s growth pattern has something to do with his or her genes. Parents of shorter stature are more likely to produce shorter offsprings; the same goes for taller kids from taller parents.

    Other factors include: 

    Your health during pregnancy

    If you’ve had a difficult pregnancy, resulting from eating poorly or smoking, chances are you'll give birth to a smaller baby. If you gained a ton of weight (more than expected) or had gestational diabetes, your baby might be larger than normal.

    Gestation

    Delayed pregnancies often produce larger than average babies whereas babies who are born prematurely are smaller.

    Sex

    Girls are typically smaller, length and weight, at birth than boys. 

    Health issues

    If your child is diagnosed with a chronic illness or any disorder affecting his or her ability to absorb nutrients, his or her growth may slow down. Certain medications such as corticosteroids might slow growth as well.

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    Genetic Conditions

    Apart from your child’s genetic makeup, having conditions such as Down Syndrome or Turner Syndrome could affect his or her development. 

    Breastfed or formula-fed

    In their first year, formula-fed infants are likely to gain more weight after about three months of age. Don’t worry because, by age two, both will weigh about the same.

    There are also cases of delayed puberty wherein the child undergoes a slower period of growth. That is until they reach puberty and are hit with a sudden growth spurt. It’s important to remember that growth isn't always a gradual, predictable process. 

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    Feeding and nutrition

    Two-year-olds are incredibly active, mobile, and energetic. For this reason, it’s important that they get all the nutrients needed from their daily food intake. In an article co-written by Registered Dietician Nutritionist, Kate Perales, for Mom&Me, it says toddlers typically should eat three balanced full meals and two or three meriendas throughout the day.

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    Don't know what to feed your toddler? Renee Rose Rodrigo, US-certified holistic nutrition coach and contributor for Smart Parenting shares a basic list of three different meals for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack time here, using ideal food portion sizes for children 1 to 4 years old.

    For your better guidance, it’s advised that you take your toddler for regular checkups, so that the pediatrician will be able to determine whether he or she is on track. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and discuss any concerns you may have regarding your child’s growth and development.

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