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Obesity, Self-esteem and Wages

  • Naci H. Mocan
  • Erdal Tekin

Obesity is associated with serious health problems, and it can generate adverse economic outcomes. We analyze a nationally-representative sample of young American adults to investigate the interplay between obesity, wages and self-esteem. Wages can be impacted directly by obesity, and they can be influenced by obesity indirectly through the channel of obesity to self-esteem to wages. We find that female wages are directly influenced by body weight, and self-esteem has an impact on wages in case of whites. Being overweight or obese has a negative impact on the self-esteem of females and of black males. The results suggest that obesity has the most significant impact on white women's wages.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 15101.

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Date of creation: Jun 2009
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Publication status: published as Obesity, Self-Esteem and Wages , Naci Mocan, Erdal Tekin. in Economic Aspects of Obesity , Grossman and Mocan. 2011
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:15101
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