Frame Size, Circumferences, and Skinfolds

Authored by: Barbara J. Scott

Handbook of Nutrition and Food

Print publication date:  July  2013
Online publication date:  April  2016

Print ISBN: 9781466505711
eBook ISBN: 9781466505728
Adobe ISBN:


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Numerous studies conducted over the past 85+ years provide a large body of evidence that simple methods of quantifying body size and proportions can be used with different populations to estimate and evaluate weight, body composition, and regional fat distribution. Applications for these measurements include monitoring of normal growth and development, evaluating response to treatment, and assessing disease risk. This chapter will discuss the strengths and weaknesses and potential best applications of three field anthropometric methods: frame size (FS), skinfolds (SFs), and circumferences. These methods have been widely studied and yield valid and reliable results when applied correctly. They are noninvasive, inexpensive, portable, and relatively simple to perform.

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