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This paper argues that many of the foundations and trends that led to the rise in obesity and other diet-related health problems in Latin America began to develop in the late nineteenth century. The tendency towards presentism in the nutrition transition literature provides a much abbreviated and limited history of changes in diet and weight. Whereas medical and nutrition researchers have tended to emphasize the recent onset of the crisis, a historical perspective suggests that increasinglydoi:10.1590/s0104-59702021000100012 pmid:33787703 fatcat:ufgsqljzzvdpzdjcr5j5xqm2na