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Identifying geographical variations in poverty-obesity relationships: empirical evidence from Taiwan

By Tzai-hung Wen, Duan-rung Chen and Meng-ju Tsai


Abstract. There is an increasing interest in the relationship between area-based disadvantage and obesity but the extent to which the poverty-obesity relationship remains constant across geographical areas remains unclear. We examined geographical variations in the relationship between poverty and obesity in Taiwan using geographically weighted regression (GWR). A representative sample of 27,293 Taiwanese adults (21 to 64 years old) from 262 townships was obtained from the 2001 Social Development Trend Survey on Health and Safety (SDSHS) in Taiwan. GWR revealed that there were local variations in the poverty-obesity relationship and that poverty was only significantly associated with obesity in less-developed areas. Significant relationship between poverty and obesity was found only in less-developed areas, suggesting that the impact of poverty on obesity is area-specific. Keywords: obesity, poverty, socio-economic inequality, geographically weighted regression, Taiwan

Year: 2011
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