Obesity Across America

The Urban Institute has an interesting report titled Obesity Across America. Being overweight (BMS>25), obese (BMI>30) or severely obese (BMI>40) is very common in the U.S. with three quarters of individuals being overweight and nearly half obese. Obesity varies by race and ethnicity as well. Black adults are more likely to live with obesity than…

Income and weight gain

Cross sectional analysis finds that individuals with lower income are more likely to be overweight or obese. Does this imply that increased income causes weight loss? A paper by Au and Johnston (2015) find the opposite result. In this paper, we use nationally representative panel data and exogenous wealth shocks (primarily inheritances and lottery wins)…

Charles Barkley and the Nanny State

Michelle Obama’s is deeply involved in her recently involved in fight against childhood obesity.  Eating healthy and exercising more is a laudable goal.  But do we want the government operatives taking the role of a Biggest Loser Drill Sergent?  Could government weight monitoring become a reality? Maybe. In an interview with Marv Albert, President Barack…

Marriage makes you fat

Researches at UNC found that marriage may make you happy and healthy but fat as well.  If you’ve been a loyal reader of the Healthcare Economist, however, you knew that already. Jason Shafrin’s research on marriage and weight gain already showed that marriage leads to increased weight gain.  In fact, the research demonstrated that one…

Health Insurance Makes You Fat

In my own research, I have examined the relationship to marriage and weight gain.   A study by Jay Bhattacharya, Kate Bundorf, Noemi Pace and Neeraj Sood found that health insurance may actually increase body mass.  According to the authors: “We find weak evidence that more generous insurance coverage increases body mass index. We find…