Document Detail

A rational eating model of binges, diets and obesity.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19581012     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
This paper addresses the rapid diffusion of obesity and the existence of different individual patterns of food consumption between non-dieters and chronic dieters. I propose a rational eating model where a forward-looking agent optimizes the intertemporal satisfaction from eating, taking into account the cost of changing consumption habits and the negative health consequences of having a non-optimal body weight. Consistent with the evidence, I show that the intertemporal maximization problem leads to a condition of overweightness, and that heterogeneity in the individual relevance of habits in consumption can determine the observed differences in the individual intertemporal patterns of food consumption and body weight. Sufficient conditions for determining when the convergence to the steady state implies oscillations or is monotonic are given. In the former case, the agent optimally alternates diets and binges until the steady state is reached, in the latter a regular intertemporal pattern of food consumption is optimal.
Davide Dragone
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article     Date:  2009-06-12
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of health economics     Volume:  28     ISSN:  0167-6296     ISO Abbreviation:  J Health Econ     Publication Date:  2009 Jul 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-09-28     Completed Date:  2010-01-26     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8410622     Medline TA:  J Health Econ     Country:  Netherlands    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  799-804     Citation Subset:  H    
Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche, Universit?? di Bologna, Strada Maggiore 45, 40125 Bologna, Italy.
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MeSH Terms
Models, Biological
Models, Psychological
Comment In:
J Health Econ. 2009 Jul;28(4):908-9   [PMID:  19570588 ]

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