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The importance of parental knowledge: Evidence from weight report cards in Mexico

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  • Prina, Silvia
  • Royer, Heather

Abstract

The rise of childhood obesity in less developed countries is often overlooked. We study the impact of body weight report cards in Mexico. The report cards increased parental knowledge and shifted parental attitudes about children's weight. We observe no meaningful changes in parental behaviors or children's body mass index. Interestingly, parents of children in the most obese classrooms were less likely to report that their obese child weighed too much relative to those in the least obese classrooms. As obesity rates increase, reference points for appropriate body weights may rise, making it more difficult to lower obesity rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Prina, Silvia & Royer, Heather, 2014. "The importance of parental knowledge: Evidence from weight report cards in Mexico," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 232-247.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:37:y:2014:i:c:p:232-247
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2014.07.001
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:beh:jbepv1:v:1:y:2017:i:1:p:15-26 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Cawley, John, 2015. "An economy of scales: A selective review of obesity's economic causes, consequences, and solutions," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 244-268.
    3. Cullinan, John & Cawley, John, 2017. "Parental misclassification of child overweight/obese status: The role of parental education and parental weight status," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 92-103.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Obesity; Health; Information; Mexico; Field experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • O54 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Latin America; Caribbean

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