Solita F. Camara-Besa is the first Filipina to specialize in physiology biochemistry. She is also known to be the first to conduct a nationwide serum cholesterol survey.
Dr. Camara-Besa earned her medical degree from the University of the Philippines in 1938, and pursued a Master's degree in Biological Chemistry at the University of Michigan in 1940.
Career and Contributions
In her chosen field of biochemistry, Dr. Camara-Besa contributed to and expanded the knowledge of nutrition in the Philippines. Her work on the sodium and potassium content of Philippine foods established the standards of good healthy diets for Filipinos. Her 8 papers on cholesterol levels in relation to diets of the various segments of Filipino population encouraged the idea of the role of fats and cholesterol in the epidemiology of atherosclerosis among Filipinos.
Dr. Camara-Besa had an important role as a medical educator, particularly to women doctors. She also was the chair of the Curriculum Committee of the University of the Philippines College of Medicine for three decades until 1980.
In 2004 she released her memoir, Up Close with Me, published by the University of the Philippines Press.
- National Academy for Science and Technology (Accessed June 10, 2007)
- UPMASA Online.org (Accessed June 10, 2007)
- The Medical Observer (Accessed June 10, 2007)
- UP College of Medicine website (Accessed June 10, 2007)