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Asian Americans, Growth, Infant



  1. Wu, Tsu-Yin PhD, RN
  2. Daniel, Linda MSN, RN


Purpose: To understand the growth patterns of Chinese-American infants from birth to 1 year old.


Methods: Retrospective cohort design comparing the growth patterns of 163 Chinese infants living in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and 158 Chinese infants living in Taipei, Taiwan. All infants were born at full-term, without major medical illnesses.


Results: Chinese-American infants were significantly heavier and longer than Taiwanese infants for all age groups and for both genders. Chinese-American infants were born at average weights, rose to the 70th to 80th percentile between 2 and 6 months, and declined to the 50th percentile or less at 9 to 12 months (when measured by American growth charts). When these infants' lengths and weights are plotted on Taiwan's growth curves, no such fluctuations were seen.


Clinical Implications: Our findings suggest that rapid weight gain in Chinese-American infants in the first 6 months after birth can be expected, and may then lessen. By the first year, on average, these infants' weights will be <50th percentile using the American National Center for Health Statistics growth standard. These findings can reassure health providers and help them to provide sound nutritional recommendations and counseling to parents.