Malnutrition And Food Aid Programs: A Case Study From Guatemala Page: 31
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a relatively strong correlation between the nature of the climate and
the linearity of the physique. Altitude also seems to influence rate
of growth as seen in the slower growth rates of children at high
altitudes compared to those at sea level. However, as Malina (1975)
points out, this is probably due to a more complicated interaction
between hypoxia, nutrition and disease. Furthermore, he suggests that
nutritional status and socioeconomic background may be the more impor-
tant factors (Malina 1973; 1975).
At this point, it is necessary to define more specifically the
term, socioeconomic factors. Oversimplified, socioeconomic factors form
a system in which the social and economic aspects of a particular popu-
lation or society are involved in a complex interplay. In this system,
social, cultural and economic factors cannot really be separated since
they are dependent upon one another. Generally, the term socioeconomic
status is used as a synonym for income and/or level of living. How-
ever income and level of living are simply the measurable or quanti-
fiable results of socioeconomics and the degree of success in a given
socioeconomic system is usually defined by the position of a particular
individual in the class structure.
As Bates and Killian (1981) and Belcher (1951; 1972) point out,
in the Third World socioeconomics is best evaluated in terms of
"domestic assets". Such assets amount to household possessions, goods
and services accessible to a given individual, household or population.
An inventory of domestic economic assets furnishes a better indicator
of the socioeconomic level of a household than data more directly re-
lated to monetary income. The underlying principle is, basically,
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Rodeheaver, Daniel Gilbert, 1954-; Bates, Frederick L. & Murphy, Arthur D. Malnutrition And Food Aid Programs: A Case Study From Guatemala, report, May 1982; (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84342/m1/44/: accessed January 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT College of Public Affairs and Community Service.