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Exposure to Obesity and Weight Gain among Adolescents

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  • Yang, Muzhe
  • Huang, Rui
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    Abstract

    In a treatment-effect framework using Add Health data, we investigate whether adolescents gain weight when increasingly exposed to obesity in their social networks. We find that weight gain can be a reaction to an increase, but not a decrease, in exposure to obesity that is based on social ties, not geographic proximity. Taking an endogenous growth perspective on the prevalence of obesity, we thus attempt to reveal a mechanism through which obesity may potentially develop into a sweeping epidemic. Our results also suggest an uphill battle against the obesity epidemic, and we recommend that its prevention be a high priority.

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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/149944
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University of Connecticut, Food Marketing Policy Center in its series Research Reports with number 149944.

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    Date of creation: Oct 2010
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    Handle: RePEc:ags:uconnr:149944

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    Related research

    Keywords: Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety;

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    15. Schroeter, Christiane & Lusk, Jayson & Tyner, Wallace, 2008. "Determining the impact of food price and income changes on body weight," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 45-68, January.
    16. John Cawley & Chad D. Meyerhoefer & David Newhouse, 2005. "The Impact of State Physical Education Requirements on Youth Physical Activity and Overweight," NBER Working Papers 11411, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Smith, Patricia K. & Bogin, Barry & Bishai, David, 2005. "Are time preference and body mass index associated?: Evidence from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 259-270, July.
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    20. Cohen-Cole, Ethan, 2006. "Multiple groups identification in the linear-in-means model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 92(2), pages 157-162, August.
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