Current Research in Medicine

Cultural and Nutritional Perspective of Indian Hunter-Gatherers (Kurichia Tribe)

R. B. Satyavathi, R. K. Anuradha, K. K. Reddy and R. B. Singh

DOI : 10.3844/amjsp.2012.1.7

Current Research in Medicine

Volume 3, Issue 1

Pages 1-7

Abstract

Problem statement: To study the cultural and nutritional perspective of Indian hunter-gatherers (Kurichia tribe), Kerala, India. Approach: Descriptive and case study analysis. Results: Though Indian scriptures provided a full zodiacal life cycle of one hundred and twenty years for an individual, this goal is rarely reached. However, it is significant to note that in Indian hunter-gatherers (Kurichia tribe) of Kerala State, all the nearest kith and kin of the centenarians successfully lead their life beyond 100 years. They have not suffered from any specific disease in their life time. Though they seem to be weak and fragile, they are sound in health. They led an active life, sometimes walking long distance in their earlier years. However, a major drawback noticed among them was that their vision was affected and some were unable to walk. They were suffering not because of their mental or physical ailments, but worried about the younger generation which is losing faith in their culture under the impact of acculturation process causing intra-generation gap in all walks of life. They felt that this transition would negatively affect the overall community. With regard to lineage of the family, it was noticed that atleast one parent or grandparent or siblings had lived over 90 years. Longevity appeared to be hereditary. There were more women than men. Most of the centenarians were without their spouses. None of them belonged to poor economic status. Most of them had good domestic relationships. Further, the results of the present study revealed that the determining factors of longevity across cultures were almost same, though the nature of some of the variables was culture-specific. Conclusion: Though continued biological and psychological health was a sin quo non for longevity, all variables played a relatively interactive, determining and dynamic role in the process of longevity.

Copyright

© 2012 R. B. Satyavathi, R. K. Anuradha, K. K. Reddy and R. B. Singh. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.