Peer Effects on Obesity in a Sample of European Children

Wencke Gwozdz, Alfonso Sousa-Poza, Lucia A. Reisch, Karin Bammann, Gabriele Eiben, Yiannis Kourides, Eva Kovács, Fabio Lauria, Kenn Konstabel, Alba M. Santaliesta-Pasias, Krishna Vyncke, Iris Pigeot

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    This study analyzes peer effects on childhood obesity using data from the first two waves of the IDEFICS study, which applies several anthropometric and other measures of fatness to approximately 14,000 children aged two to nine participating in both waves in 16 regions of eight European countries. Peers are defined as same-sex children in the same school and age group. The results show that peer effects do exist in this European sample but that they differ among both regions and different fatness measures. Peer effects are larger in Spain, Italy, and Cyprus – the more collectivist regions in our sample – while waist circumference generally gives rise to larger peer effects than BMI. We also provide evidence that parental misperceptions of their own children's weight goes hand in hand with fatter peer groups, supporting the notion that in making such assessments, parents compare their children's weight with that of friends and schoolmates.
    This study analyzes peer effects on childhood obesity using data from the first two waves of the IDEFICS study, which applies several anthropometric and other measures of fatness to approximately 14,000 children aged two to nine participating in both waves in 16 regions of eight European countries. Peers are defined as same-sex children in the same school and age group. The results show that peer effects do exist in this European sample but that they differ among both regions and different fatness measures. Peer effects are larger in Spain, Italy, and Cyprus – the more collectivist regions in our sample – while waist circumference generally gives rise to larger peer effects than BMI. We also provide evidence that parental misperceptions of their own children's weight goes hand in hand with fatter peer groups, supporting the notion that in making such assessments, parents compare their children's weight with that of friends and schoolmates.
    LanguageEnglish
    JournalEconomics and Human Biology
    Volume18
    Pages139-152
    ISSN1570-677X
    DOIs
    StatePublished - 2015

    Keywords

      Cite this

      Gwozdz, W., Sousa-Poza, A., Reisch, L. A., Bammann, K., Eiben, G., Kourides, Y., ... Pigeot, I. (2015). Peer Effects on Obesity in a Sample of European Children. Economics and Human Biology, 18, 139-152. DOI: 10.1016/j.ehb.2015.05.002
      Gwozdz, Wencke ; Sousa-Poza, Alfonso ; Reisch, Lucia A. ; Bammann, Karin ; Eiben, Gabriele ; Kourides, Yiannis ; Kovács, Eva ; Lauria, Fabio ; Konstabel, Kenn ; Santaliesta-Pasias, Alba M. ; Vyncke, Krishna ; Pigeot, Iris. / Peer Effects on Obesity in a Sample of European Children. In: Economics and Human Biology. 2015 ; Vol. 18. pp. 139-152
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      abstract = "This study analyzes peer effects on childhood obesity using data from the first two waves of the IDEFICS study, which applies several anthropometric and other measures of fatness to approximately 14,000 children aged two to nine participating in both waves in 16 regions of eight European countries. Peers are defined as same-sex children in the same school and age group. The results show that peer effects do exist in this European sample but that they differ among both regions and different fatness measures. Peer effects are larger in Spain, Italy, and Cyprus – the more collectivist regions in our sample – while waist circumference generally gives rise to larger peer effects than BMI. We also provide evidence that parental misperceptions of their own children's weight goes hand in hand with fatter peer groups, supporting the notion that in making such assessments, parents compare their children's weight with that of friends and schoolmates.",
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      author = "Wencke Gwozdz and Alfonso Sousa-Poza and Reisch, {Lucia A.} and Karin Bammann and Gabriele Eiben and Yiannis Kourides and Eva Kov{\'a}cs and Fabio Lauria and Kenn Konstabel and Santaliesta-Pasias, {Alba M.} and Krishna Vyncke and Iris Pigeot",
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      Gwozdz, W, Sousa-Poza, A, Reisch, LA, Bammann, K, Eiben, G, Kourides, Y, Kovács, E, Lauria, F, Konstabel, K, Santaliesta-Pasias, AM, Vyncke, K & Pigeot, I 2015, 'Peer Effects on Obesity in a Sample of European Children' Economics and Human Biology, vol. 18, pp. 139-152. DOI: 10.1016/j.ehb.2015.05.002

      Peer Effects on Obesity in a Sample of European Children. / Gwozdz, Wencke; Sousa-Poza, Alfonso; Reisch, Lucia A.; Bammann, Karin; Eiben, Gabriele; Kourides, Yiannis; Kovács, Eva; Lauria, Fabio; Konstabel, Kenn; Santaliesta-Pasias, Alba M.; Vyncke, Krishna; Pigeot, Iris.

      In: Economics and Human Biology, Vol. 18, 2015, p. 139-152.

      Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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      AU - Sousa-Poza,Alfonso

      AU - Reisch,Lucia A.

      AU - Bammann,Karin

      AU - Eiben,Gabriele

      AU - Kourides,Yiannis

      AU - Kovács,Eva

      AU - Lauria,Fabio

      AU - Konstabel,Kenn

      AU - Santaliesta-Pasias,Alba M.

      AU - Vyncke,Krishna

      AU - Pigeot,Iris

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      Gwozdz W, Sousa-Poza A, Reisch LA, Bammann K, Eiben G, Kourides Y et al. Peer Effects on Obesity in a Sample of European Children. Economics and Human Biology. 2015;18:139-152. Available from, DOI: 10.1016/j.ehb.2015.05.002