Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

Intergenerational and socioeconomic gradients of childhood obesity

Costa-i-Font, Joan ORCID: 0000-0001-7174-7919 and Gil, Joan (2013) Intergenerational and socioeconomic gradients of childhood obesity. LSE Health working paper series in health policy and economics (30/2013). LSE Health and Social Care, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

PDF - Accepted Version
Download (443kB) | Preview


Can the rise in obesity among children be attributed to intergenerationally parental influences? How important is a parent’s socioeconomic status in accounting for the emergence of obesity among children? This paper documents evidence of an emerging social gradient of obesity in pre-school children resulting from a combination of income and education effects, as well as less intensive childcare associated with maternal employment, when different forms of intergenerational transmission are controlled for. We also estimate and decompose income related inequalities in child obesity. We take advantage of a uniquely constructed dataset in Spain spanning the years 2003 to 2006, a period in which a significant spike in the growth of child obesity was observed. Our results suggest robust evidence of a socioeconomic and intergenerational gradient. Higher income systematically prevents obesity in children, while inequalities in child obesity have doubled in just three years with a pure income effect accounting for 72-66% of these income inequality estimates, even when intergenerational transmission is accounted for. Although, intergenerational transmission does not appear to be gender specific, when accounted for, mother’s labour market participation significantly explains obesity among boys but not among girls.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2013 The Authors
Divisions: European Institute
Social Policy
Centre for Economic Performance
LSE Health
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Date Deposited: 27 Mar 2013 11:14
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2023 23:28

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics