Young Adulthood Body Mass Index and Weight-for-height Reference Curves for Southern Iran


S.M.T Ayatollahi 1 , *

1 Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, [email protected], Iran

How to Cite: Ayatollahi S. Young Adulthood Body Mass Index and Weight-for-height Reference Curves for Southern Iran , Iran Red Crescent Med J. Online ahead of Print ; 8(2):77-82.


Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal: 8 (2); 77-82
Article Type: Research Article


Background: Obesity is becoming a public health problem in Iran and is a risk factor for many chronic diseases.

            Objective: The objectives were to present two index (BMI) namely, weight-for-height (WFH) and body Mass Index (BMI) centile charts to evaluate obesity in young married adults of Shiraz, the most developed city of Southern Iran and examine its correlates.

            Design and methods: This was a cross-sectional study of the southern Iran. A random sample of 596 subjects (295 males aged 23 to 43 years and 301 females aged 18 to 35 years) was selected and their heights, weights, and arm circumferences measured. The HRY distribution-free method was applied to estimate percentiles of WFH and BMI.

            Results: Weight-for-height charts independent of age presented for both sexes. Age related and sex specific BMI charts displayed which show cut-off points for thinness (5th percentile), overwight (85th percentile) and obese (95th percentile). Female subjects had become heavier and more obese than before, while males weight and obesity stayed almost constant. Females social chass associated with their BMI.

            Conclusion: Weight-for-height and BMI charts are useful tools to study shape of adults. While the former may be used when age is unknown, the latter is more useful to study age related thin, overweight and obese young adults. Due to data representativeness and structural similarity, the charts provide local reference curves for clinical work and public health purposes in urban areas of Iran. 

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