Age and sex differences in the impact of seasonal energy stress among Andean agriculturalists

William R. Leonard*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


It has been widely argued that children and females are most severely affected during periods of food scarcity. This proposition is tested using dietary and anthropometric data from the Andean community of Nuñoa, Peru. Contrary to expectation, children (ages 12 years and under) are relatively protected from seasonal food scarcity while adults experience severe caloric stress. Anthropometric measures of nutritional status corroborate the dietary analysis, indicating significantly better nutritional status in children. Sex differences in dietary adequacy are not evident. Adult males, however, have significantly poorer measures of nutritional status than adult females. These differences in dietary adequacy and nutritional status reflect adaptations to marked seasonality in work demands and energy availability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)351-368
Number of pages18
JournalHuman Ecology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 1991


  • adaptation
  • energetics
  • nutritional status
  • Peru
  • seasonality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Ecology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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