Risk aversion and health behaviors

Are risk averse individuals less likely to engage in unhealthy behaviors?  According to Anderson and Mellor (JHE 2008), the answer is yes.  Using a Holt and Laury (AER 2002) methodology to measure risk aversion, the authors find that individuals who are risk averse are less likely to smoke, drink, be overweight or drive over the speed limit.  Risk averse individuals are more likely to use a seat belt.

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