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Height, weight and body mass index values of mid-19th century New York legislative officers

Howard Bodenhorn ()

Economics & Human Biology, 2010, vol. 8, issue 2, 291-293

Abstract: Previous studies of mid-19th century American heights and body mass index values have used potentially unrepresentative groups--students in military academies, prisoners, and African Americans. This paper uses an alternative source with heights and weights of ordinary people employed in a wide variety of occupations. The results reveal the operation of the antebellum paradox in that average heights declined between men born circa 1820 and those born circa 1840. Average weights also declined for adult males, suggesting a decline in mid-19th century nutritional status.

Keywords: Height; Weight; Body; mass; index; 19th; century; Americans (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:eee:ehbiol:v:8:y:2010:i:2:p:291-293