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The Causal Effect of Education on Health Behaviors: Evidence from Turkey

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  • Aysit Tansel

    () (Department of Economics, Middle East Technical University, IZA Bonn, and ERF Cairo)

  • Deniz Karaoglan

    () (Department of Economics, Middle East Technical University)

Abstract

This study provides causal effect of education on health behaviors in Turkey which is a middle income developing country. Health Survey of the Turkish Statistical Institute for the years 2008, 2010 and 2012 are used. The health behaviors considered are smoking, alcohol consumption, fruit and vegetable consumption, exercising and one health outcome namely, the body mass index (BMI). We examine the causal effect of education on these health behaviors and the BMI Instrumental variable approach is used in order to address the endogeneity of education to health behaviors. Educational expansion of the early 1960s is used as the source of exogenous variation in years of schooling. Our main findings are as follows. Education does not significantly affect the probability of smoking or exercising. The higher the education level the higher the probability of alcohol consumption and the probability of fruit and vegetable consumption. Higher levels of education lead to higher BMI levels. This study provides a baseline for further research on the various aspects of health behaviors in Turkey.

Suggested Citation

  • Aysit Tansel & Deniz Karaoglan, 2016. "The Causal Effect of Education on Health Behaviors: Evidence from Turkey," Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers 1606, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum.
  • Handle: RePEc:koc:wpaper:1606
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    File URL: http://eaf.ku.edu.tr/sites/eaf.ku.edu.tr/files/erf_wp_1606.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Aysit Tansel & Halil Ibrahim Keskin, 2017. "Education Effects On Days Hospitalized And Days Out Of Work By Gender: Evidence From Turkey," Working Papers 2017/7, Turkish Economic Association.
    2. Aysit Tansel & Deniz Karaoğlan, 2016. "The Causal Effect Of Education On Health Behaviors: Evidence From Turkey," Working Papers 2016/2, Turkish Economic Association.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Turkey; Health Behaviors; Education; Instrumental Variable Estimation;

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I19 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Other

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