Mother's nutritional label use and children's body weight

Hung Hao Chang, Rodolfo M. Nayga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


In spite of a growing body of literature studying the determinants of children's obesity, relatively little is known about the association between parental nutritional label use and children's body weight. To bridge this gap, this study examines the effect of mother's nutritional label use on children's body mass index and overweight. Using data from the 2001 National Health Interview Survey in Taiwan, a two-stage econometric model is proposed and estimated with a semiparametric method. Results indicate that mother's nutritional label use leads to lower probability of children becoming overweight or obese, and a non-linear relationship between mother's nutritional label use and children's BMI is evident. For mothers who seldom use nutritional labels, label use does not lead to a reduction in children's BMI. In contrast, for mothers who are frequent nutritional label users, label use contributes negatively to children's BMI. However, the magnitudes of these effects are relatively small, suggesting that additional instruments or policies are needed if further reduction in children's body mass index is desired.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-178
Number of pages8
JournalFood Policy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Apr

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Hung-Hao Chang acknowledges partial funding support from the National Science Counsel of Taiwan under Grant No: 95-2415-H-002-041. The data used in the analysis is provided by the Bureau of Health Promotion, Department of Health and National Health Research Institute in Taiwan. The interpretation and conclusions do not represent those of Department of Health and National Health Research Institute. The authors accept responsibility for any remaining errors or omissions.


  • Children's body mass index
  • Nutritional label use
  • Overweight
  • Semiparametric method
  • Taiwan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Development
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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