Cadernos de Saúde Pública
On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X
LEITE, Maurício Soares; SANTOS, Ricardo Ventura; GUGELMIN, Silvia Angela and COIMBRA JR., Carlos E. A.. Physical growth and nutritional profile of the Xavánte indigenous population in Sangradouro-Volta Grande, Mato Grosso, Brazil. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2006, vol.22, n.2, pp.265-276. ISSN 1678-4464. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-311X2006000200004.
This study describes the physical growth and employs anthropometry to assess the nutritional status of a Xavánte indigenous community in central Brazil. Weight, stature, arm circumference, and triceps skinfold were measured in 549 individuals 0 to 90 years of age. Compared to the NCHS reference population, the children presented low height and weight for age, although maintaining body proportionality. Based on WHO criteria, 31.7% of children less than five years presented stunting, while 69.9% of adults presented some degree of overweight. Body composition measures in both genders were situated between the 25th and 50th percentiles of the NCHS reference population until adolescence, when they surpassed the medians. However the mean arm muscle area was consistently above the 50th percentile. The authors call attention to the complexity of the Xavánte epidemiological and nutritional profile, arguing that the study's findings have significant implications for the healthcare system serving this population, in addition to highlighting relevant ecological and socioeconomic issues, particularly in relation to food sustainability and nutritional transition.
Keywords : Nutritional Status; South American Indians; Anthropometry; Nutrition.