Anthropometric and maturation measurements of children, ages 5 to 14 years, in a biracial community--the Bogalusa Heart Study.Am J Clin Nutr. 1977 Apr; 30(4):582-91.AJ
An epidemiological survey of anthropometric and maturation variables was conducted on 3,524 children from the biracial community of Bogalusa, Louisiana. These children, representing 93% of the population, were examined during the school year September 1973 through May 1974. Black boys differed slightly from white boys in height and weight; black girls were taller and heavier than white girls. The black children had longer upper arm lengths and smaller upper arm circumferences than the white children. The median ponderosity (weight divided by the cubed height) decreased with increasing heigth for the four race-sex groups, and a skewed distribution of ponderosity indicated an excess of heavy children among the tall. Based on the Tanner criteria for grading secondary sex characteristics, maturation occurred earlier in the more ponderous girls, although such was not the case for boys. Whereas the Tanner secondary sex characteristics appeared earlier in black girls, white girls reported menarche earlier. The racial and sexual differences known to exist in triceps skinfold were observed for this population. No statistically significant difference was observed overall for height and weight between children within this one community and those of the National Health Examination Survey. However, Bogalusa girls at the 95th percentile were heavier after age 11 than girls of the United States. Also, there was a tendency for white girls in this community to report reaching menarche at an earlier age than black girls, which contrasts slightly with the national sample.