A decade of rapid change: Biocultural influences on child growth in highland Peru

A decade of rapid change: Biocultural influences on child growth in highland Peru INTRODUCTIONOver the past decade, many areas of Peru have undergone dramatic economic, social, cultural and climate changes that have disrupted long‐established life ways (Adams, ; Lennox & Gowdy, ; Lennox, ; Mitchell, ). This includes the highland hamlet of Chugurpampa in the northern Department of La Libertad. The effects of such changes on childhood growth and development have not been adequately studied. The aim of this research is to assess secular patterns of change in anthropometrics in Chugurpampa over a relatively short period of time. Chugurpampa, in the western cordillera, covers an altitude range of 2875 to 3750 m, with houses arrayed over more than 700 hectares of mountainous terrain. The principal occupation is potato agriculture, produced for subsistence as well as for the market. The first author, upon visiting the hamlet for the first time in over 20 years to conduct a restudy of medical tradition and health outcomes, noticed an apparent increase in people's body size. This led to further inquiry into patterns of growth in infants and young children.To examine this secular shift, a brief review of the cultural and historical context of the region is first necessary. In the 1980s, Chugurpampa was a large, vibrant http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Journal of Human Biology Wiley

A decade of rapid change: Biocultural influences on child growth in highland Peru

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Publisher
Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
Copyright
© 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
ISSN
1042-0533
eISSN
1520-6300
D.O.I.
10.1002/ajhb.23072
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

INTRODUCTIONOver the past decade, many areas of Peru have undergone dramatic economic, social, cultural and climate changes that have disrupted long‐established life ways (Adams, ; Lennox & Gowdy, ; Lennox, ; Mitchell, ). This includes the highland hamlet of Chugurpampa in the northern Department of La Libertad. The effects of such changes on childhood growth and development have not been adequately studied. The aim of this research is to assess secular patterns of change in anthropometrics in Chugurpampa over a relatively short period of time. Chugurpampa, in the western cordillera, covers an altitude range of 2875 to 3750 m, with houses arrayed over more than 700 hectares of mountainous terrain. The principal occupation is potato agriculture, produced for subsistence as well as for the market. The first author, upon visiting the hamlet for the first time in over 20 years to conduct a restudy of medical tradition and health outcomes, noticed an apparent increase in people's body size. This led to further inquiry into patterns of growth in infants and young children.To examine this secular shift, a brief review of the cultural and historical context of the region is first necessary. In the 1980s, Chugurpampa was a large, vibrant

Journal

American Journal of Human BiologyWiley

Published: Jan 1, 2018

References

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