Friday, 28 June 2013

Is Nutrition Growing Up?

The Archives joined the Nutrition debate: through a talk which discussed 75 yrs of  LSHTM contributions to nutrition through the eyes of Cicely Williams.
Williams was a student of the School and a pioneering advocate of breastfeeding, who in 1930s discovered a link between sudden weaning and malnutrition.

Student photograph 1928-9, including Cicely Williams, 3rd row, in black coat
 Williams joined the Colonial Service and spent 7 years working in East Africa, identifying the condition she named as 'Kwashiorkor', taken from the Ga language, and meaning the rapid weaning of a child on the birth of a sibling. In 1936 she was  posted to Malaya where she continued to work in the area of child and maternal health.
In 1942 she was interened in the Changi Prison of War camp where she observed and researched malnutrition at first hand.
Malnourished prisoners photographed by Dean Smith, Stanley Camp 1940s
The Nutrition Collection at LSHTM  holds papers of research undertaken by interned nutritionists, including Dean Smith,   who were  held in POW camps in Hong Kong during WW2.  Like Williams, they continued to research whilst being interned. 

Rice grinding at Stanley Camp

The unique wartime papers are available for research from the archives. See our web pages to access the online catalogue.

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