Fat Economics: Nutrition, Health, and Economic Policy

Fat Economics: Nutrition, Health, and Economic Policy

by Mario Mazzocchi, Jason F. Shogren, W. Bruce Traill
     
 

The obesity epidemic and the growing debate about what, if any, public health policy should be adopted is the subject of endless debates within the media and in governments around the world. Whilst much has been written on the subject, this book takes a unique approach by looking at the obesity epidemic from an economic perspective. Written in a language accessible

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Overview

The obesity epidemic and the growing debate about what, if any, public health policy should be adopted is the subject of endless debates within the media and in governments around the world. Whilst much has been written on the subject, this book takes a unique approach by looking at the obesity epidemic from an economic perspective. Written in a language accessible to non-specialists, the authors provide a timely discussion of evolving nutrition policies in both the developing and developed world, discuss the factors influencing supply and demand of food supply, and review the evidence for various factors which may explain recent trends in diets, weight, and health.

The traditional economic model assumes people choose to be overweight as part of a utility maximisation process that involves choices about what to eat and drink, how much time to spend on leisure, food preparation, and exercise, and choices about appearance and health. Market and behavioural failures, however, such as time available to a person, education, costs imposed on the health system and economic productivity provide the economic rationale for government intervention. The authors explore various policy measures designed to deal with the epidemic and examine their effectiveness within a cost-benefit analysis framework. While providing a sound economic basis for analysing policy decisions, the book also aims to show the underlying limits of the economic framework in quantifying changes in public well-being.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780199213856
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
05/15/2009
Pages:
208
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures

List of Tables

List of Boxes

List of Abbreviations

Introduction 1

1 The Obesity Epidemic 9

2 Why Obesity? An Economic Perspective 40

3 Economic Evaluation Tools for Evidence-Based Policymaking 92

4 Policy Intervention 114

5 Conclusion 158

Glossary 163

Index 173

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