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When does dietary knowledge matter to obesity and overweight prevention?

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  • Shimokawa, Satoru

Abstract

Improving dietary knowledge has the potential to prevent obesity and overweight and, if effective, is a highly feasible policy measure. This paper proposes a new framework to examine the effects of dietary knowledge on nutrient intake and diet quality. The framework allows the effects to differ by one’s expectation about food availability (EFA). Using data from China, we find that dietary knowledge affects mainly the quantity of diet (e.g., lowering total calorie intake) when EFA is increasing, while it affects mainly the quality of diet (e.g., lowering the share of calories from oils) when EFA is decreasing. The effect on the quantity is larger among overweight adults, while the effect on the quality is more significant among non-overweight adults. Without distinguishing the direction of changes in EFA as in previous studies, the estimated effects of dietary knowledge tend to be smaller. Thus, as an anti-obesity measure, dietary education may be more effective than indicated by previous studies under the situations where EFA increases (e.g., introducing food coupons), while only marginally effective under the situations where EFA decreases (e.g., increasing real food prices).

Suggested Citation

  • Shimokawa, Satoru, 2013. "When does dietary knowledge matter to obesity and overweight prevention?," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 35-46.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:38:y:2013:i:c:p:35-46
    DOI: 10.1016/j.foodpol.2012.09.001
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    Cited by:

    1. Jing You, 2014. "Dietary change, nutrient transition and food security in fast-growing China," Chapters,in: Handbook on Food, chapter 9, pages 204-245 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Andaleeb Rahman, 2015. "Universal Food Security Program and Nutritional Intake: Evidence from the Hunger Prone KBK Districts in Odisha," Working Papers id:6925, eSocialSciences.
    3. Liu, Jing & Shively, Gerald E. & Binkley, James K., 2014. "Access to variety contributes to dietary diversity in China," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(P1), pages 323-331.
    4. Jing You & Sangui Wang & Laurence Roope, 2014. "Multi-dimensional Intertemporal Poverty in Rural China," CSAE Working Paper Series 2014-36, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
    5. Jing You & Katsushi Imai & Raghav Gaiha, 2014. "Decoding the Growth-Nutrition Nexus in China: Inequality, Uncertainty and Food Insecurity," Global Development Institute Working Paper Series 20714, GDI, The University of Manchester.
    6. You, Jing & Imai, Katsushi S. & Gaiha, Raghav, 2016. "Declining Nutrient Intake in a Growing China: Does Household Heterogeneity Matter?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 171-191.
    7. Liu, Jing & Shively, Gerald & Binkley, James K., 2013. "Dietary Diversity in Urban and Rural China: An Endogenous Variety Approach," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 149624, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    8. You, Jing & Kontoleon, Andreas & Wang, Sangui, 2015. "Identifying a Sustainable Pathway to Household Multi-dimensional Poverty Reduction in Rural China," 2015 Conference, August 9-14, 2015, Milan, Italy 211865, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    9. repec:kap:jecinq:v:16:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s10888-017-9352-z is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Andaleeb Rahman, 2015. "Universal food security program and nutritional intake: Evidence from the hunger prone KBK districts in Odisha," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2015-015, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
    11. Amaya-Castellanos, Claudia & Shamah-Levy, Teresa & Escalante-Izeta, Ericka & Morales-Ruán, María del Carmen & Jiménez-Aguilar, Alejandra & Salazar-Coronel, Araceli & Uribe-Carvajal, Rebeca & Amaya-Cas, 2015. "Development of an educational intervention to promote healthy eating and physical activity in Mexican school-age children," Evaluation and Program Planning, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 159-168.

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    Keywords

    China; Dietary education; Diet quality; Food; Obesity;

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