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The effects of old and new media on children's weight

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  • Agne Suziedelyte

Abstract

Childhood obesity rates have recently been rising in many countries. It has been suggested in the literature that changes in children's media exposure may contribute to explaining this trend. I investigate whether or not this hypothesis is supported by data. I contribute to the literature by focusing not only on television but also on new media - computers and video games. The Child Development Supplement to the Panel Study of Income Dynamics is used for the analysis. To address the endogeneity of children's media exposure, I use dynamic and panel data models. This is another improvement upon the existing literature. Additionally, an extensive list of control variables is included in the regressions. I find that video game playing or computer use has no effect on children's body weight. On the other hand, television viewing may increase children's body weight slightly.

Suggested Citation

  • Agne Suziedelyte, 2015. "The effects of old and new media on children's weight," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(10), pages 1008-1018, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:47:y:2015:i:10:p:1008-1018
    DOI: 10.1080/00036846.2014.987916
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Hung-Hao Chang & Rodolfo M. Nayga, 2009. "Television Viewing, Fast-Food Consumption, And Children'S Obesity," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 27(3), pages 293-307, July.
    2. Cawley, John & Liu, Feng, 2012. "Maternal employment and childhood obesity: A search for mechanisms in time use data," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 10(4), pages 352-364.
    3. Jeffrey M Wooldridge, 2010. "Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262232588, January.
    4. Ruhm, Christopher J., 2008. "Maternal employment and adolescent development," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(5), pages 958-983, October.
    5. David M. Cutler & Edward L. Glaeser & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2003. "Why Have Americans Become More Obese?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(3), pages 93-118, Summer.
    6. Patricia M. Anderson & Kristin F. Butcher & Diane Whitemore Schanzenbach, 2007. "Childhood Disadvantage and Obesity: Is Nurture Trumping Nature?," NBER Chapters,in: The Problems of Disadvantaged Youth: An Economic Perspective, pages 149-180 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Angela Fertig & Gerhard Glomm & Rusty Tchernis, 2009. "The connection between maternal employment and childhood obesity: inspecting the mechanisms," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 227-255, September.
    8. Andreyeva, Tatiana & Kelly, Inas Rashad & Harris, Jennifer L., 2011. "Exposure to food advertising on television: Associations with children's fast food and soft drink consumption and obesity," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 221-233, July.
    9. Baum II, Charles L. & Ruhm, Christopher J., 2009. "Age, socioeconomic status and obesity growth," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 635-648, May.
    10. Anderson, Patricia M. & Butcher, Kristin F. & Levine, Phillip B., 2003. "Maternal employment and overweight children," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 477-504, May.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

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