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Food prices, access to food outlets and child weight

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  • Powell, Lisa M.
  • Bao, Yanjun
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    Abstract

    This study examines the importance of food prices and restaurant and food store outlet availability for child body mass index (BMI). We use the 1998, 2000 and 2002 waves of the child-mother merged files from the 1979 cohort of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth combined with fruit and vegetable and fast food price data obtained from the American Chamber of Commerce Researchers Association and outlet density data on fast food and full-service restaurants and supermarkets, grocery stores and convenience stores obtained from Dun & Bradstreet. Using a random effects estimation model, we found that a 10% increase in the price of fruits and vegetables was associated with a 0.7% increase in child BMI. Fast food prices were not found to be statistically significant in the full sample but were weakly negatively associated with BMI among adolescents with an estimated price elasticity of -0.12. The price estimates were robust to whether we controlled for outlet availability based on a per capita or per land area basis; however, the association between food outlets and child BMI differed depending on the definition. The associations of fruit and vegetable and fast food prices with BMI were significantly stronger both economically and statistically among low- versus high-socioeconomic status children. The estimated fruit and vegetable and fast food price elasticities were 0.14 and -0.26, respectively, among low-income children and 0.09 and -0.13, respectively, among children with less educated mothers.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B73DX-4VFK7YC-1/2/40ae3fc378e474dc22a9c5f6bb130668
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics & Human Biology.

    Volume (Year): 7 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 (March)
    Pages: 64-72

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:ehbiol:v:7:y:2009:i:1:p:64-72

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622964

    Related research

    Keywords: Obesity Food prices Food outlets Environment Children;

    References

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    Citations

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    Cited by:
    1. Rahkovsky, Ilya & Gregory, Christian A., 2013. "Food prices and blood cholesterol," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 95-107.
    2. Nakamura, R.;, 2012. "Intergenerational effect of schooling and childhood overweight," Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers 12/02, HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York.
    3. Jahns, Lisa & Adair, Linda & Mroz, Thomas & Popkin, Barry M., 2012. "The declining prevalence of overweight among Russian children: Income, diet, and physical activity behavior changes," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 139-146.
    4. Cotti, Chad & Tefft, Nathan, 2013. "Fast food prices, obesity, and the minimum wage," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 134-147.
    5. Bradbear, Catherine & Friel, Sharon, 2013. "Integrating climate change, food prices and population health," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 56-66.
    6. Matthias Staudigel, 2012. "How do obese people afford to be obese? Consumption strategies of Russian households," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 43(6), pages 701-714, November.
    7. Staudigel, Matthias, 2011. "How (much) do food prices contribute to obesity in Russia?," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 133-147, March.
    8. Han, Euna & Powell, Lisa M. & Isgor, Zeynep, 2012. "Supplemental nutrition assistance program and body weight outcomes: The role of economic contextual factors," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 74(12), pages 1874-1881.
    9. Dunn, Richard A. & Sharkey, Joseph R. & Horel, Scott, 2012. "The effect of fast-food availability on fast-food consumption and obesity among rural residents: An analysis by race/ethnicity," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 1-13.
    10. Grafova, Irina B. & Freedman, Vicki A. & Lurie, Nicole & Kumar, Rizie & Rogowski, Jeannette, 2014. "The difference-in-difference method: Assessing the selection bias in the effects of neighborhood environment on health," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 13(C), pages 20-33.
    11. Alviola, Pedro A. & Nayga, Rodolfo M. & Thomsen, Michael R. & Danforth, Diana & Smartt, James, 2014. "The effect of fast-food restaurants on childhood obesity: A school level analysis," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 12(C), pages 110-119.
    12. Lee, Helen, 2012. "The role of local food availability in explaining obesity risk among young school-aged children," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 74(8), pages 1193-1203.
    13. Powell, Lisa M., 2009. "Fast food costs and adolescent body mass index: Evidence from panel data," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(5), pages 963-970, September.
    14. Hruschka, Daniel J. & Brewis, Alexandra A., 2013. "Absolute wealth and world region strongly predict overweight among women (ages 18–49) in 360 populations across 36 developing countries," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 337-344.
    15. Bauhoff, Sebastian, 2014. "The effect of school district nutrition policies on dietary intake and overweight: A synthetic control approach," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 12(C), pages 45-55.

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