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The Income Body Weight Gradients in the Developing Economy of China

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  • Tafreschi, Darjusch

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Abstract

Though existing theories predict the income gradient of individual body weight to change sign from positive to negative in process of economic development, empirical evidence is scarce. This paper adds to the literature on that topic by investigating the case of China using data from the China Health and Nutrition survey. Using a one-dimensional measure to characterize the level of economic development of a region, regression analyses indicate that more income is related to larger future growth of individuals’ BMI in less developed areas whereas it lowers BMI growth in more developed areas. The switch is somewhat more pronounced for females. Finally, using concentration indices it is shown that overweight status is predominantly a problem of higher income ranks in less developed geographical areas and trickles down to lower income ranks throughout the course of economic development.

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File URL: http://www1.vwa.unisg.ch/RePEc/usg/econwp/EWP-1140.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science in its series Economics Working Paper Series with number 1140.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:usg:econwp:2011:40

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Keywords: BMI; Bodyweight; Income; Development; China; CHNS; Concentration Index;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Baeten, Steef & Van Ourti, Tom & van Doorslaer, Eddy, 2013. "Rising inequalities in income and health in China: Who is left behind?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 1214-1229.
  2. Bonnefond, Céline & Clément, Matthieu, 2014. "Social class and body weight among Chinese urban adults: The role of the middle classes in the nutrition transition," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 112(C), pages 22-29.
  3. Xie, Ruizhi & Awokuse, Titus O., 2013. "The Role of Health Status on Income in China," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 151137, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  4. Deuchert, Eva & Cabus, Sofie J. & Tafreschi, Darjusch, 2012. "A Short Note on Economic Development and Socioeconomic Inequality in Female Body Weight," Economics Working Paper Series 1204, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.

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