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Maternal Employment and Childhood Obesity in China: Evidence from the China Health and Nutrition Survey

  • Nie, Peng

    ()

    (University of Hohenheim)

  • Sousa-Poza, Alfonso

    ()

    (University of Hohenheim)

Using five waves from the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS), we investigate the association between maternal employment and obesity in children aged 3–17 in both rural and urban China. Using BMI and waist circumference as measures for pediatric adiposity, we provide scant evidence for its relation to maternal employment. We also find no strong association between maternal employment and our measures for children's diet and physical activity. Our study also suggests that grandparenting could have beneficial effects on childhood obesity.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 8030.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2014
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Applied Economics, 2014, 46(20), 2418–2428
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp8030
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  1. Patricia M. Anderson & Kristin F. Butcher & Phillip B. Levine, 2002. "Maternal Employment and Overweight Children," NBER Working Papers 8770, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Brown, Judith E. & Broom, Dorothy H. & Nicholson, Jan M. & Bittman, Michael, 2010. "Do working mothers raise couch potato kids? Maternal employment and children's lifestyle behaviours and weight in early childhood," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 70(11), pages 1816-1824, June.
  3. Greve, Jane, 2011. "New results on the effect of maternal work hours on children's overweight status: Does the quality of child care matter?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(5), pages 579-590, October.
  4. Christopher J. Ruhm, 2000. "Parental Employment and Child Cognitive Development," NBER Working Papers 7666, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Herbst, Chris M. & Tekin, Erdal, 2009. "Child Care Subsidies and Childhood Obesity," IZA Discussion Papers 4255, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Stephanie von Hinke Kessler Scholder, 2007. "Maternal Employment and Overweight Children: Does Timing Matter?," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 07/180, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  7. repec:taf:jnlbes:v:30:y:2012:i:1:p:67-80 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Emma García & José M. Labeaga & Ana Carolina Ortega Masagué, 2006. "Maternal Employment and Childhood Obesity in Spain," Working Papers 2006-17, FEDEA.
  9. James Bishop, 2011. "The Effect of Maternal Employment on Youth Overweight in Australia," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 87(s1), pages 92-104, 09.
  10. Liu, Echu & Hsiao, Cheng & Matsumoto, Tomoya & Chou, Shinyi, 2009. "Maternal full-time employment and overweight children: Parametric, semi-parametric, and non-parametric assessment," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 152(1), pages 61-69, September.
  11. Gwozdz, Wencke & Sousa-Poza, Alfonso & Reisch, Lucia A. & Ahrens, Wolfgang & De Henauw, Stefaan & Eiben, Gabriele & Fernández-Alvira, Juan M. & Hadjigeorgiou, Charalampos & Kovács, Eva & Lauria, Fabio, 2013. "Maternal Employment and Childhood Obesity: A European Perspective," IZA Discussion Papers 7371, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Burkhauser, Richard V. & Cawley, John, 2008. "Beyond BMI: The value of more accurate measures of fatness and obesity in social science research," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 519-529, March.
  13. Haiyong Liu, 2008. "The China health and nutrition survey: an important database for poverty and inequality research," Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 373-376, December.
  14. Jens Bonke & Jane Greve, 2012. "Children’s health-related life-styles: how parental child care affects them," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 557-572, December.
  15. Yee Fei Chia, 2008. "Maternal labour supply and childhood obesity in Canada: evidence from the NLSCY," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 41(1), pages 217-242, February.
  16. John Cawley & Feng Liu, 2007. "Maternal Employment and Childhood Obesity: A Search for Mechanisms in Time Use Data," NBER Working Papers 13600, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Ziol-Guest, Kathleen M. & Dunifon, Rachel E. & Kalil, Ariel, 2013. "Parental employment and children's body weight: Mothers, others, and mechanisms," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 52-59.
  18. Baker, Michael & Milligan, Kevin, 2008. "Maternal employment, breastfeeding, and health: Evidence from maternity leave mandates," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 871-887, July.
  19. Lisa Benson & Manouchehr Mokhtari, 2011. "Parental Employment, Shared Parent–Child Activities and Childhood Obesity," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 233-244, June.
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