Economic preferences and obesity among a low-income African American community

Angela C M de Oliveira, Tammy C M Leonard, Kerem Shuval, Celette Sugg Skinner, Catherine Eckel, James C. Murdoch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Obesity has reached epidemic proportions in the US, with a significantly higher fraction of African Americans who are obese than whites. Yet there is little understanding of why some individuals become obese while others do not. We conduct a lab-in-field experiment in a low-income African American community to investigate whether risk and time preferences play a role in the tendency to become obese. We examine the relationship between incentivized measures of risk and time preferences and weight status (BMI), and find that individuals who are more tolerant of risk are more likely to have a higher BMI. This result is driven by the most risk tolerant individuals. Patience is not independently statistically related to BMI in this sample, but those who are more risk averse and patient are less likely to be obese.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Economic Behavior and Organization
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Sep 30 2014

Fingerprint

Economics
Obesity
African Americans
Body mass index
Low income
Time preference
Risk preferences
Risk-averse
Proportion
Field experiment
Measure of risk
Individual risk

Keywords

  • Field experiment
  • Obesity
  • Risk preference
  • Time preference

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Economics and Econometrics

Cite this

Economic preferences and obesity among a low-income African American community. / de Oliveira, Angela C M; Leonard, Tammy C M; Shuval, Kerem; Skinner, Celette Sugg; Eckel, Catherine; Murdoch, James C.

In: Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 30.09.2014.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

de Oliveira, Angela C M ; Leonard, Tammy C M ; Shuval, Kerem ; Skinner, Celette Sugg ; Eckel, Catherine ; Murdoch, James C. / Economic preferences and obesity among a low-income African American community. In: Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization. 2014.
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