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The Rise of Obesity in Transition Economies: Theory and Evidence from the Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey

  • Sonya K. Huffman
  • Marian Rizov

This study integrates theoretical and empirical models to facilitate understanding of human obesity and the factors contributing to rising obesity in Russia during the transition from a planned to a market economy. Recent individual level data from the Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey for 1994 and 2004 show that diet/caloric intake, smoking, gender and education are important determinants of obesity in Russia. Empirical results strongly support our model for production of health and demand for inputs in the health production function. The analysis provides information on dietary patterns and other determinants of obesity which is essential for formulation and implementation of effective policies designed to improve overall nutritional wellbeing and reduce obesity and mortality of the population. Interventions, which enhance education toward healthy lifestyles and healthy diet, could play a vital role in preventing obesity in Russia.

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File URL: http://www.econ.kuleuven.be/licos/publications/dp/dp185.pdf
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Paper provided by LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven in its series LICOS Discussion Papers with number 18507.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:lic:licosd:18507
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  1. Sonya Kostova Huffman & Stanley R. Johnson, 2004. "Impacts of Economic Reform in Poland: Incidence and Welfare Changes Within a Consistent Framework," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(2), pages 626-636, May.
  2. Inas Rashad, 2006. "Structural Estimation of Caloric Intake, Exercise, Smoking, and Obesity," NBER Working Papers 11957, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Grossman, Michael, 2000. "The human capital model," Handbook of Health Economics, in: A. J. Culyer & J. P. Newhouse (ed.), Handbook of Health Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 347-408 Elsevier.
  4. Zohoori, Namvar & Mroz, Thomas A. & Popkin, Barry & Glinskaya, Elena & Lokshin, Michael & Mancini, Dominic & Kozyreva, Polina & Kosolapov, Mikhail & Swafford, Michael, 1998. "Monitoring the economic transition in the Russian Federation and its implications for the demographic crisis -- the Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 26(11), pages 1977-1993, November.
  5. Elizabeth Brainerd & David M. Cutler, 2004. "Autopsy on an Empire: Understanding Mortality in Russia and the Former Soviet Union," NBER Working Papers 10868, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Michelle A. Mendez & Barry M. Popkin, 2004. "Globalization, Urbanization and Nutritional Change in the Developing World," The Electronic Journal of Agricultural and Development Economics, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, vol. 1(2), pages 220-241.
  7. Shin-Yi Chou & Michael Grossman & Henry Saffer, 2002. "An Economic Analysis of Adult Obesity: Results from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System," NBER Working Papers 9247, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Huffman, Wallace E. & Huffman, Sonya Kostova & Tegene, Abebayehu & Rickertsen, Kyrre, 2006. "The Economics of Obesity-Related Mortality among High Income Countries," 2006 Annual Meeting, August 12-18, 2006, Queensland, Australia 25567, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  9. Komlos, John & Baur, Marieluise, 2004. "From the tallest to (one of) the fattest: the enigmatic fate of the American population in the 20th century," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 57-74, March.
  10. Stillman, Steven, 2006. "Health and nutrition in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union during the decade of transition: A review of the literature," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 104-146, January.
  11. Darius Lakdawalla & Tomas Philipson & Jay Bhattacharya, 2005. "Welfare-Enhancing Technological Change and the Growth of Obesity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 253-257, May.
  12. Darius Lakdawalla & Tomas Philipson, 2002. "The Growth of Obesity and Technological Change: A Theoretical and Empirical Examination," Working Papers 0203, Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago.
  13. Mendez, Michelle A. & Popkin, Barry M., 2004. "Globalization, Urbanization and Nutritional Change in the Developing World," eJADE: electronic Journal of Agricultural and Development Economics, Food and Agriculture Organization, Agricultural and Development Economics Division, vol. 1(2).
  14. Cockerham, William C., 2000. "Health lifestyles in Russia," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 51(9), pages 1313-1324, November.
  15. Mark R. Rosenzweig & T. Paul Schultz, 1982. "The Behavior of Mothers as Inputs to Child Health: The Determinants of Birth Weight, Gestation, and Rate of Fetal Growth," NBER Chapters, in: Economic Aspects of Health, pages 53-92 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Huffman, Wallace E., 1991. "Agricultural Household Models: Survey and Critique," Staff General Research Papers 11008, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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