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The timing of adrenarche in Maya girls, Merida, Mexico.

Keestra, Sarai M. and Bentley, Gillian R. and Núñez-de la Mora, Alejandra and Houghton, Lauren C. and Wilson, Hannah and Vázquez-Vázquez, Adriana and Cooper, Gillian D. and Dickinson, Federico and Griffiths, Paula and Bogin, Barry A. and Varela-Silva, Maria Inês (2021) 'The timing of adrenarche in Maya girls, Merida, Mexico.', American journal of human biology, 33 (2). e23465.


Aims: To investigate adrenarcheal age among Maya girls and its association with body composition and dietary variables. We hypothesized adrenarche would occur earlier given the current dual burden of nutrition in Mexico. Materials and Methods: 25 Maya girls aged 7 to 9 from Merida, Mexico using ELISAs to measure salivary DHEA‐S, standard anthropometry for height, weight, and skinfolds, bioelectrical impedance for body composition variables, as well as a food frequency questionnaire for dietary information. Results: Our hypothesis was rejected—adrenarche occurred close to 9 years. While no measures of body composition were significantly associated with adrenarcheal status, girls eating meat and dairy products more frequently had significantly higher DHEA‐S levels. Discussion: Like other populations living in ecologically challenging environments, adrenarche occurred relatively late among Maya girls. Adrenarche has been linked to measures of body composition, particularly, the adiposity or body mass index rebound, but no relevant anthropometric measures were associated, possibly because of the small sample. Conclusion: Further studies are required to illuminate how adrenarcheal variation relates to developmental plasticity, body composition, pubertal progression, and animal product consumption in other transitional populations.

Item Type:Article
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Publisher statement:© 2020 The Authors. American Journal of Human Biology published by Wiley Periodicals LLC. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution‐NonCommercial‐NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non‐commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Date accepted:18 June 0202
Date deposited:22 June 2020
Date of first online publication:09 July 2020
Date first made open access:17 July 2020

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