Environment, Nutrition and Health in the Enquiry Promoted by G. Murat in Naples 1811

Aldo Mariani Costantini


The Survey, promoted in 1811 by the government of the Kingdom of Naples, then ruled by the French-supported king Joachim Murat, represents the first analysis of the mutual relationships among environment, social variables, nutrition and public health conducted in Italy. The large amount of data that were collected then still lays in the archives of Naples and of the other major towns that were part of the Kingdom. The data that have been made public, referring to local situations, document impressive conditions of poverty and undernutrition among people of the lower classes. It is meaningful that nutritional deprivation was then identified as the main cause of predisposition to disease. It is also noteworthy that, at the beginning of the XIX century, the lower classes of the population of Southern Italy were still very far from the application of the healthy dietary model defined nowadays as mediterranean diet. 


Key words: Environmental deprivation and famine - Nutritional epidemiology - Early Eight hundredth - Naples' kingdom

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