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What Explains Differences in Smoking, Drinking, and Other Health Related Behaviors

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  • Glaeser, Edward
  • Cutler, David
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    Abstract

    We explore economic model of health behaviors. While the standard economic model of health as an investment is generally supported empirically, the ability of this model to explain heterogeneity across individuals is extremely limited. Most prominently, the correlation of different health behaviors across people is virtually zero, suggest that standard factors such as variation in discount rates or the value of life are not the drivers of behavior. We focus instead on two other factors: genetics; and behavioral-specific situational factors. The first factor is empirically important, and we suspect the second is as well.

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    File URL: http://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/2664274/cutler_smokingdrinking.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Harvard University Department of Economics in its series Scholarly Articles with number 2664274.

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    Date of creation: 2005
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    Publication status: Published in American Economic Review
    Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:2664274

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    Cited by:
    1. Cutler, David M. & Lleras-Muney, Adriana, 2010. "Understanding differences in health behaviors by education," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 1-28, January.
    2. Tansel, Aysit & Karaoglan, Deniz, 2014. "Health Behaviors and Education in Turkey," IZA Discussion Papers 8262, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Ozdenoren, Emre & Salant, Stephen & Silverman, Dan, 2010. "Willpower and the Optimal Control of Visceral Urges," Discussion Papers dp-10-35, Resources For the Future.
    4. Pablo Brañas-Garza & María Paz Espinosa & María Repolles, 2010. "Time discounting (d) and pain anticipation: Experimental evidence," ThE Papers 10/13, Department of Economic Theory and Economic History of the University of Granada..
    5. Weili Ding & Steven Lehrer & J. Niles Rosenquist & Janet Audrain-McGovern, 2006. "The Impact of Poor Health on Education: New Evidence Using Genetic Markers," Working Papers 1045, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
    6. Vincze, János & Koltay, Gábor, 2009. "Fogyasztói döntések a viselkedési közgazdaságtan szemszögéből
      [Consumer decisions from the angle of behavioural economics]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(6), pages 495-525.
    7. Dhaval Dave & Henry Saffer, 2007. "Risk Tolerance and Alcohol Demand Among Adults and Older Adults," NBER Working Papers 13482, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Shinsuke Ikeda & Kang Myong-Il & Fumio Ohtake, 2009. "Fat Debtors: Time Discounting, Its Anomalies, and Body Mass Index," ISER Discussion Paper 0732, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    9. Christopher H. Wheeler, 2007. "Human capital externalities and adult mortality in the U.S," Working Papers 2007-045, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
    10. Bolin, Kristian & Lindgren, Björn, 2014. "Non-monotonic health behaviours - implications for individual health-related behaviour in a demand-for-health framework," Working Papers in Economics 588, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
    11. Cutler, David M. & Lleras-Muney, Adriana, 2010. "Understanding Differences in Health Behaviors by Education," Scholarly Articles 5344195, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    12. Daniel J. Benjamin & Sebastian A. Brown & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2006. "Who is “Behavioral”? Cognitive Ability and Anomalous Preferences," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000001334, David K. Levine.
    13. Dave, Dhaval & Saffer, Henry, 2008. "Alcohol demand and risk preference," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 810-831, December.
    14. repec:iae:iaewps:wp2014n01 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Céline Bonnet & Pierre Dubois & Valérie Orozco, 2014. "Household food consumption, individual caloric intake and obesity in France," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 46(3), pages 1143-1166, May.

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