Limited Self-Control, Obesity and the Loss of Happiness
AbstractObesity has become a major health issue. Research in economics has provided important insights as to how technological progress reduced the relative price of food and contributed to the increase in obesity. However, the increased availability of food might well have overstrained will power and led to suboptimal consumption decisions relative to people’s own standards. We propose the economics of happiness as an approach to study the phenomenon. Based on proxy measures for experienced utility, it is possible to directly address whether certain observed behavior is suboptimal and therefore reduces a person’s well-being. It is found that obesity decreases the well-being of individuals who report limited self-control, but not otherwise.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2925.
Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2007
Date of revision:
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Other versions of this item:
- Alois Stutzer, 2007. "Limited Self-Control, Obesity and the Loss of Happiness," Working papers 2007/07, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
- D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
- D91 - Microeconomics - - Intertemporal Choice and Growth - - - Intertemporal Consumer Choice; Life Cycle Models and Saving
- I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Production
- I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare and Poverty - - - General Welfare
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2007-08-08 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2007-08-08 (All new papers)
- NEP-HAP-2007-08-08 (Economics of Happiness)
- NEP-LTV-2007-08-08 (Unemployment, Inequality & Poverty)
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