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Description:This 1963 image depicted a Pägei, New Guinea family including a husband at far left, his two wives, and four children, all the offspring of the wife standing in the middle.
What is of importance here, is the dramatic physical differences between the two women. The older mother’s physical appearance illustrates what is known as “maternal depletion syndrome”, which resulted from repeated child-bearing, and prolonged lactation, which depleated her of nutrients in a region of the World that offered little in the way of nutritional resources. The younger woman at far right, appears robust and healthy, and had born no children.

Maternal depletion syndrome results when a woman does not take enough time in between births to restore her nutritional reserves, thereby, depleating her of the nutrition needed to restore her body mass, and energy.

High Resolution: Click here for hi-resolution image (18.09 MB)
Content Providers(s):CDC/ Clement Benjamin
Creation Date:1963
Photo Credit:
CDC Organization
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Copyright Restrictions:None - This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions. As a matter of courtesy we request that the content provider be credited and notified in any public or private usage of this image.