(STUDY FINDS) -- LONDON — A new study is illustrating just how important a balanced, healthy diet is during childhood. Researchers from Imperial College London examined the height and weight of millions of school-aged kids from all over the world. Their analysis shows a staggering 20 centimeter (7.9 inches) height difference between adolescents of the same age living in the tallest and shortest countries.
A child’s height and weight are considered indicators of overall health and quality of diet. In all, researchers analyzed a dataset of 65 million kids (ages five through 19) living in 193 different nations between 1985 and 2019. That work reveals the nearly eight-inch gap between 19-year-olds living in the tallest and shortest countries.
Researchers say the numbers suggest an eight-year growth gap for girls and a six-year growth gap for boys. For example, the average 19-year-old girl in Bangladesh and Guatemala is about the same height as the average 11-year-old girl living in the Netherlands.
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