Wages and Alcohol Consumption, Smoking, Weight Gain and Exercising: Evidence on Australian Men and Women
The good health of an individual is a combination of uncontrollable factors that includes genetics and random events and controllable factors through the regulation of activities such as smoking, drinking, eating, exercise and other informed choices. Since the work of Grossman (1972) a significant relationship between health and earnings is predicted. This paper investigates this relationship using four indicators of healthy activity in the context of Australia. Using the 1995 Australian National Health Survey we simultaneously examine the effects of drinking, smoking, eating and exercising on wages. Special attention is given to nonlinearities and interaction of these effects between each other and with age as is suggested in the medical literature. To model the interaction of smoking with these other effects separate models are fit for smokers and nonsmokers which account for the potentional for selectivity bias. Results are given separately for men and women.
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