The American Academy of Pediatrics has released a policy statement on the dangers to young people posed by extreme efforts to limit their weight. It's aimed at athletes, but applies -- possibly more so -- to dancers as well.
It applies to youngsters in sports where leanness or strength is emphasized, including bodybuilding, gymnastics, figure skating, football and cheerleading.
These are sports in which coaches may encourage unhealthy weight management practices that can lead to problems including eating disorders, dehydration, heat stress and gaining too much fat instead of muscle, which can lead to cardiovascular problems, the policy authors said.
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