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Rational Non-addictive Eating: Cycles, Overweightness, and Underweightness



Although a deviation from the physiologically optimal weight increases the probability of dying, the steady state for a lifetime expected-utility maximiser is a state of overweightness. However, even a small initial deviation from this rationally stationary weight is followed by explosive oscillations. These oscillations might lead to severe and chronic underweightness in a late stage of life. In the presence of socio-cultural norms of appearance, the rationally stationary weight of fat people is lower than otherwise and the rationally stationary weight of lean people is greater than otherwise.

Suggested Citation

  • Levy, A., 2000. "Rational Non-addictive Eating: Cycles, Overweightness, and Underweightness," Economics Working Papers wp00-07, School of Economics, University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia.
  • Handle: RePEc:uow:depec1:wp00-07

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    Rational eating; cycles;

    JEL classification:

    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior

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