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Health and Well-Being in Udaipur and South Africa

Health and Well-Being in Udaipur and South Africa

(p.317) 9 Health and Well-Being in Udaipur and South Africa
Developments in the Economics of Aging
Anne CaseAngus Deaton
University of Chicago Press

This chapter presents a descriptive account of health and economic status in India and South Africa, focusing on data from three research sites: one in rural Rajasthan, India; one in a shack township outside of Cape Town, South Africa; and one in a rural South African site that, until 1994, was part of a Bantustan. Among the comparative results reported in the study, South Africans were found to be taller and heavier than the Indians, though their children are no taller at the same age. South African self-assessed physical and mental health is no better, and South Africans are more likely to report that they have to miss meals for lack of money. In spite of differences in incomes across the three sites, South Africans and Indians report a very similar list of symptoms of ill health. Although they have much lower incomes, urban women in South Africa have fully caught up with black American women in the prevalence of obesity, and are catching up in terms of hypertension. These women have the misfortune to be experiencing many of the diseases of affluence without experiencing affluence itself.

Keywords:   South Africa, India, health status, economic status, ill health, obesity, hypertension, Udaipur

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