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An Economic Analysis of Obesity in Europe: Health, Medical Care and Absenteeism Costs

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  • Anna Sanz de Galdeano

Abstract

Obesity is not only a health but also an economic phenomenon with potentially important direct and indirect economic costs that are unlikely to be fully internalized by the obese. In the US, obesity prevalence is the highest among OECD countries and the issue has long been the focus of policy debate and academic research. However, European obesity rates are rising and there is still a lack of economic analysis of the obesity phenomenon in Europe. This paper attempts to fill in this gap by using longitudinal micro-evidence from the European Community Household Panel to assess the importance of several costs of obesity in nine EU countries. The analysis provides nationally comparable estimates of the costs of obesity in terms of health, use of health care services and absenteeism.

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Paper provided by FEDEA in its series Working Papers with number 2007-38.

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Date of creation: Dec 2007
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Handle: RePEc:fda:fdaddt:2007-38

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  1. Anna Sanz De Galdeano, 2005. "The Obesity Epidemic in Europe," CSEF Working Papers 143, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  2. Tatiana Andreyeva & Pierre-Carl Michaud & Arthur van Soest, 2005. "Obesity and Health in Europeans Ages 50 and Above," Working Papers 331, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  3. Jeffrey M Wooldridge, 2010. "Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262232588, December.
  4. Lusine Lusinyan & Leo Bonato, 2007. "Work Absence in Europe," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 54(3), pages 475-538, July.
  5. Pierre-Carl Michaud & Arthur van Soest & Tatiana Andreyeva, 2007. "Cross-Country Variation in Obesity Patterns among Older Americans and Europeans," Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population Research Papers 185, McMaster University.
  6. David M. Cutler & Edward L. Glaeser, 2006. "Why Do Europeans Smoke More than Americans?," NBER Working Papers 12124, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. David Cutler & Edward Glaeser, 2005. "What Explains Differences in Smoking, Drinking and Other Health-Related Behaviors," NBER Working Papers 11100, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Sergi Jiménez-Mart�n & José M. Labeaga & Maite Mart�nez-Granado, 2002. "Latent class versus two-part models in the demand for physician services across the European Union," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(4), pages 301-321.
  9. Chamberlain, Gary, 1980. "Analysis of Covariance with Qualitative Data," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 225-38, January.
  10. Shapiro, Jesse & Glaeser, Edward & Cutler, David, 2003. "Why Have Americans Become More Obese," Scholarly Articles 2640583, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  11. Barmby, Tim A. & Ercolani, Marco G. & Treble, John G., 2000. "Sickness Absence: An International Comparison," IRISS Working Paper Series 2000-03, IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD.
  12. Debra Sabatini Dwyer & Olivia S. Mitchell, 1998. "Health Problems as Determinants of Retirement: Are Self-Rated Measures Endogenous?," NBER Working Papers 6503, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. David M. Cutler & Edward L. Glaeser & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2003. "Why Have Americans Become More Obese?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(3), pages 93-118, Summer.
  14. John Cawley, 2000. "Body Weight and Women's Labor Market Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 7841, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Giorgio Brunello & Beatrice d'Hombres, 2006. "Does Body Weight affect Wages? Evidence from Europe," "Marco Fanno" Working Papers 0027, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche "Marco Fanno".
  16. Shin-Yi Chou & Michael Grossman & Henry Saffer, 2002. "An Economic Analysis of Adult Obesity: Results from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System," NBER Working Papers 9247, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. John Cawley, 2004. "The Impact of Obesity on Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
  18. Daniel S. Hamermesh & Jeff E. Biddle, 1993. "Beauty and the Labor Market," NBER Working Papers 4518, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Mundlak, Yair, 1978. "On the Pooling of Time Series and Cross Section Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 69-85, January.
  20. Darius Lakdawalla & Tomas Philipson, 2002. "The Growth of Obesity and Technological Change: A Theoretical and Empirical Examination," NBER Working Papers 8946, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Franco Peracchi, 2002. "The European Community Household Panel: A review," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 63-90.
  22. Zagorsky, Jay L., 2005. "Health and wealth: The late-20th century obesity epidemic in the U.S," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 296-313, July.
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Cited by:
  1. Giorgio Brunello & Daniele Fabbri & Margherita Fort, 2010. "Years of Schooling, Human Capital and the Body Mass Index of European Females," CHILD Working Papers wp02_10, CHILD - Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic economics - ITALY.
  2. Brunello, Giorgio & Michaud, Pierre-Carl & Sanz-de-Galdeano, Anna, 2008. "The Rise in Obesity across the Atlantic: An Economic Perspective," IZA Discussion Papers 3529, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Dackehag, Margareta & Gerdtham, Ulf-G & Nordin, Martin, 2011. "Productivity or discrimination? An economic analysis of excess-weight penalty in the Swedish labor market," Working Papers 2011:12, Lund University, Department of Economics.
  4. Vincenzo Atella & Noemi Pace & Daniela Vuri, 2008. "Are employers discriminating with respect to weight? European Evidence using Quantile Regression," CEIS Research Paper 123, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 14 Jul 2008.
  5. Averett, Susan L. & Argys, Laura & Kohn, Jennifer L., 2012. "Immigration, Obesity and Labor Market Outcomes in the UK," IZA Discussion Papers 6454, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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