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World Health Organization Releases New Child Growth Standards

Standards confirm that all children worldwide have the potential to grow the same

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
206-709-3400

GENEVA -- New international Child Growth Standards for infants and young children released today by the World Health Organization (WHO) provide evidence and guidance for the first time about how every child in the world should grow.

The new WHO Child Growth Standards confirm that children born anywhere in the world and given the optimum start in life have the potential to develop to within the same range of height and weight. Naturally there are individual differences among children, but across large populations, regionally and globally, the average growth is remarkably similar. For example, children from India, Norway and Brazil all show similar growth patterns when provided healthy growth conditions in early life. The new standards prove that differences in children's growth to age five are more influenced by nutrition, feeding practices, environment, and healthcare than genetics or ethnicity.

To read the full press release, visit the WHO Web site.

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