Nutrition and the Decline in Mortality Since 1700: Some Preliminary Findings

  title={Nutrition and the Decline in Mortality Since 1700: Some Preliminary Findings},
  author={R. Fogel},
This paper uses the data in the NBER/CPE pilot sample of genealogies to create a new time series on life expectation in the U.S. since 1720. After attaining remarkably high levels toward the end of the eighteenth century, life expectation as measured by e0(10) began a decline that lasted about 80 years before beginning the new rise with which we have long been familiar. Second, time series on the average adult stature of national populations in North America and Europe are used as a measure of… Expand
The Short and the Dead: Nutrition, Mortality, and the “Antebellum Puzzle” in the United States
Between 1830 and 1860 the United States experienced rapid economic growth but declining stature and rising mortality. Debate has centered on whether the American diet deteriorated in theExpand
New findings on secular trends in nutrition and mortality: Some implications for population theory
Publisher Summary This chapter describes the evolution of thought on, and knowledge of, the secular decline in mortality; provides new evidence and new analytical techniques that have made itExpand
"Development, Health, Nutrition, and Mortality: The Case of the 'Antebellum Puzzle' in the United States"
The Antebellum Puzzle' describes the situation of declining stature and rising mortality in the three decades prior to the American Civil War (1861-65). It is labeled a puzzle, since this period wasExpand
Cohort and period effects in the long run decline of mortality , Paris 1817-2000
A growing body of evidence suggests there is a long lasting impact of early life conditions. This suggests an important role for cohort effects in mortality decline. Here we investigate mortality inExpand
Long-Term Trends in Health, Welfare, and Economic Growth in the United States
We present evidence showing that the course of economic growth and of health, as measured by stature, Body Mass Index (BMI), mortality rates, or the prevalence of chronic conditions, diverged in theExpand
Reassessing the Standard of Living in the Soviet Union: An Analysis Using Archival and Anthropometric Data
Both Western and Soviet estimates of GNP growth in the USSR indicate that GNP per capita grew in every decade - sometimes rapidly - from 1928 to 1985. While this measure suggests that the standard ofExpand
Disease and Development: The Effect of Life Expectancy on Economic Growth
What is the effect of increasing life expectancy on economic growth? To answer this question, we exploit the international epidemiological transition, the wave of international health innovations andExpand
The democratization of longevity: How the poor became old in Paris, 1870-1940
At the end 19 century, industrialized countries experienced both a decline in urban mortality to the extent that rural-urban differentials, once vastly favorable to rural areas, reversed. The processExpand
Health, Height, Nutrition, and Mortality: Evidence on the "Antebellum Puzzle" from Union Army Recruits in the Middle of the Nineteenth Century
The Antebellum Puzzle' describes the situation of declining stature and pos mortality in the three decades prior to the American Civil War (1861-65). It is this period was one of rapid economicExpand
Infant mortality in Victorian Britain: the mother as medium.
There is evidence of a rise in infant diarrhoea at the very end of the nineteenth century which has been linked to a succession of hot and dry summers and, by at least one writer, to the surge in horse transport, and hence street manure and flies. Expand


The Heights of Americans in Three Centuries: Some Economic and Demographic Implications
This paper discusses the potential usefulness of anthropometric measurements in exploring the contributions of nutrition to American economic growth and demographic change. It argues that althoughExpand
The impact of scarcity and plenty on population change in England 1541-1871
The validity of Malthuss characterization of the long-run dynamic relationship between a population and its economic environment is tested using a long-term series of births deaths and marriages forExpand
Exploring the uses of data on height: the analysis of long-term trends in nutrition, labor welfare, and labor productivity.
By providing information on the overall performance of the economy and on the performance of its principal industrial sectors and geographic regions, these measures have succinctly characterized the pattern of economic change in the United States, England, France, and several other European nations for periods of up to a century and a half. Expand
New estimates of child mortality in the United States at the turn of the century.
The results suggest the need for revising accounts of American black demographic history, including birth rates, and imply that 20th-century progress in narrowing black-white mortality differentials has been smaller than is commonly believed. Expand
The Heights of Europeans Since 1750: a New Source for European Economic History
Economic and social historians have traditionally been concerned to measure changes in the income and welfare of populations in the past.Until recently, however, they have not recognized thatExpand
Urban French mortality in the nineteenth century.
A striking tendency is revealed for mortality gains after mid-century in the urban departements of France, where water- and food-borne diseases account for a major amount of its disadvantage relative to the other departements. Expand
Secular trends in mortality in the Connecticut Valley, 1700-1850.
Examining typical rural patterns during the earliest phase of American settlement, especially the changes in mortality of a colonizing population over time, suggests that events of childhood mortality have far reaching effects on adult longevity in these agricultural communities. Expand
Fertility, mortality and causes of death; an examination of issues related to the modern rise of population.
Summary This paper attempts to remove some sources of misunderstanding of the interpretation of the growth of population outlined in The Modern Rise of Population, particularly the lack of attentionExpand
Genotype-environment relationships: an analysis of stature distribution curves during the last century in Italy.
The increasing fit of stature distribution to the Normal distribution agrees with the hypothesis of an increasing expression of the genetic endowment in consequence of a progressive improvement in living conditions. Expand
Cycles and trends of mortality in 18 large American cities, 1871-1900.
  • R. Higgs
  • Geography, Medicine
  • Explorations in economic history
  • 1979
A simple model is proposed that relates short-term fluctuations in the urban death rate to the fluctuations in general business activity via a procyclical demographic variable, immigration, which reveals a pattern remarkably similar to the business cycle. Expand