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Demography. 2011 Nov;48(4):1429-50. doi: 10.1007/s13524-011-0064-x.

Explaining the female black-white obesity gap: a decomposition analysis of proximal causes.

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  • 1Centre for Health Economics, Monash University, Clayton, Victoria 3800, Australia.

Abstract

There exist remarkably large differences in body weights and obesity prevalence between black and white women in the United States; and crucially, these differences are a significant contributor to black-white inequalities in health. In this article, we investigate the most proximal explanations for the weight gap: namely, differences in diet and exercise. More specifically, we decompose black-white differences in body mass index and waist-to-height ratio into components reflecting black-white differences in energy intake and energy expenditure. The analysis indicates that overconsumption is much more important than a lack of exercise in explaining the weight gap, which suggests that diet interventions will have to play a fundamental role if the weight gap between black and white women is to decline.

PMID:
21948107
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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