Mother's nutritional label use and children's body weight
In spite of a growing body of literature studying the determinants of children's obesity, relatively little is known about the association between parental nutritional label use and children's body weight. To bridge this gap, this study examines the effect of mother's nutritional label use on children's body mass index and overweight. Using data from the 2001 National Health Interview Survey in Taiwan, a two-stage econometric model is proposed and estimated with a semiparametric method. Results indicate that mother's nutritional label use leads to lower probability of children becoming overweight or obese, and a non-linear relationship between mother's nutritional label use and children's BMI is evident. For mothers who seldom use nutritional labels, label use does not lead to a reduction in children's BMI. In contrast, for mothers who are frequent nutritional label users, label use contributes negatively to children's BMI. However, the magnitudes of these effects are relatively small, suggesting that additional instruments or policies are needed if further reduction in children's body mass index is desired.
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