Document Detail

Collective behavior in the spatial spreading of obesity.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22822425     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Obesity prevalence is increasing in many countries at alarming levels. A difficulty in the conception of policies to reverse these trends is the identification of the drivers behind the obesity epidemics. Here, we implement a spatial spreading analysis to investigate whether obesity shows spatial correlations, revealing the effect of collective and global factors acting above individual choices. We find a regularity in the spatial fluctuations of their prevalence revealed by a pattern of scale-free long-range correlations. The fluctuations are anomalous, deviating in a fundamental way from the weaker correlations found in the underlying population distribution indicating the presence of collective behavior, i.e., individual habits may have negligible influence in shaping the patterns of spreading. Interestingly, we find the same scale-free correlations in economic activities associated with food production. These results motivate future interventions to investigate the causality of this relation providing guidance for the implementation of preventive health policies.
Lazaros K Gallos; Pablo Barttfeld; Shlomo Havlin; Mariano Sigman; Hernán A Makse
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.     Date:  2012-06-14
Journal Detail:
Title:  Scientific reports     Volume:  2     ISSN:  2045-2322     ISO Abbreviation:  Sci Rep     Publication Date:  2012  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-07-23     Completed Date:  2013-03-17     Revised Date:  2013-07-12    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101563288     Medline TA:  Sci Rep     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  454     Citation Subset:  IM    
Levich Institute and Physics Department, City College of New York, New York, NY 10031, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Geography, Medical
Obesity / epidemiology*,  etiology
Risk Factors
United States / epidemiology

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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