The effects of cigarette costs on BMI and obesity.
ABSTRACT About 30% of Americans are currently obese, which is roughly a 100% increase from 25 years ago. Public health officials have consequently become alarmed because recent research indicates that societal costs of obesity now exceed those of cigarette smoking and alcoholism. Cigarette taxes may have exacerbated the prevalence of obesity. In 1964, the US Surgeon General issued its first report relating smoking and health, and since that time, federal and state governments have increased cigarette taxes in a successful effort to reduce cigarette smoking. However, because cigarette smoking and obesity seem inversely related, cigarette taxes may have simultaneously increased obesity. This paper examines the effects of cigarette costs on BMI and obesity and finds that they have significant positive effects. This paper attempts to reconcile conflicting evidence in the literature by controlling more carefully for correlation with state-specific time trends using panel data. Results indicate that the net benefit to society of increasing cigarette taxes may not be as large as previously thought, though this research in no way concludes that they should be decreased to prompt weight loss.
- SourceAvailable from: Sofie J. Cabus[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The origin of the obesity epidemic in developing countries is still poorly understood. It has been prominently argued that economic development provides a natural interpretation of the growth in obesity. This paper tests the main aggregated predictions of the theoretical framework to analyze obesity. Average body weight and health inequality should be associated with economic development. Both hypotheses are confirmed: we find higher average female body weight in economically more advanced countries. In relatively nondeveloped countries, obesity is a phenomenon of the socioeconomic elite. With economic development, obesity shifts toward individuals with lower socioeconomic status. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.Health Economics 07/2013; · 2.23 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: We provide new evidence on the extent to which the demand for cigarettes is derived from the demand for weight control (i.e. weight loss or avoidance of weight gain). We utilize nationally representative data that provide the most direct evidence to date on this question: individuals are directly asked whether they smoke to control their weight. We find that, among teenagers who smoke frequently, 46% of girls and 30% of boys are smoking in part to control their weight. This practice is significantly more common among youths who describe themselves as too fat than those who describe themselves as about the right weight.Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research) 02/2013;
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Although several studies of highly developed countries find tobacco control efforts impact obesity rates, whether such results extend to less developed countries is unclear. Accordingly, this study re-examines this issue by using data from countries that lie across the development spectrum. Similar to the existing literature, evidence suggests higher cigarette prices increase the per cent of the population that is overweight or obese. Yet, other tobacco control efforts have less influence. A number of other factors, including health-care expenditure, urban concentration and undernourishment, are also found to influence population weight.Applied Economics Letters 01/2013; 20(1):80-83. · 0.23 Impact Factor