The Effect of Income on Health Choices: Physical Activity and Alcohol Use
AbstractThis paper investigates the relation between household income level and individual alcohol consumption behavior, and the relation between household income level and individual physical activity participation choice. Previous research is inconclusive regarding the relations on these two diametrically-opposed goods. We explore this issue through the lens of time preference. Our model considers income as a budget constraint of today as well as a component of future utility, and those with lower income discount future utility more heavily. Data from Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) are tested utilizing a multinomial Logit method and a binary Logit method. The results show that alcohol consumption frequency positively correlates to income, but excessive alcohol use mostly occurs among lower income population. Participation of physical activity shows a positive relation with household income. In general, these findings support the hypothesis that low income individuals are more likely to make choices to the detriment of future health, since they discount future utility relatively heavily.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in its series 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. with number 149616.
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
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health choices; income; physical activity; alcohol consumption; binary Logit model; multinomial Logit model; Agribusiness; Consumer/Household Economics; Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety; Health Economics and Policy; Institutional and Behavioral Economics;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-06-04 (All new papers)
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