Growth of rural and urban children in the Valley of Oaxaca, Mexico

Robert M. Malina, John H. Himes, Carol Dutton Stepick, Francisca Gutierrez Lopez, Peter H. Buschang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Weight, stature, arm circumference, and the triceps skinfold were measured in 1,410 school children, 6 through 14 years of age, from two urban colonias in the city of Oaxaca de Juarez (n = 479), and from two rural Ladino (n = 467) and two rural Zapotec (n = 464) communities in the Valley of Oaxaca in southern Mexico. Children from rural Ladino communities and urban colonias are significantly taller, heavier, and more muscular than children in rural Zapotec communities. The differences between rural Ladino and urban colonia children favor the former, particularly for weight and stature. These observations thus suggest (1) that children in the rural, indigenous communities in the Valley of Oaxaca are relatively undernourished compared to children in Ladinoized and urban communities, and (2) that rural‐to‐urban migration does not necessarily result in improved growth status.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)327-336
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Physical Anthropology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1981
Externally publishedYes


  • Arm circumference
  • Growth
  • Mexico
  • Oaxaca
  • Rural
  • Skinfold
  • Stature
  • Urban
  • Weight


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