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December 1918


Am J Dis Child. 1918;16(6):359-375. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1918.01910180002001

The widespread interest lately aroused in the prevalence and degree of malnutrition among school children makes it desirable to examine anew the facts of normal growth in this class of our population. The existence of undernourishment or malnutrition presupposes a normal standard which must be reached if a child is to be considered in perfect health.

The standards by which nutrition has been chiefly measured in the past have been the body-weight and the rate of increase in weight as compared with normal averages. Height and rate of growth in height have also been given a certain amount of value. Most observations have considered both height and weight in relation to the age of the child. The purpose of this paper is to show that the weight-to-age and height-to-age relationships are of comparatively little value in estimating the nutrition of the body. The relation of weight to height is the