Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2164593
 
 

References (26)



 
 

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Is Psychological Well-Being Linked to the Consumption of Fruit and Vegetables?


David G. Blanchflower


Dartmouth College - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); Peter G. Peterson Institute for International Economics

Andrew J. Oswald


University of Warwick - Department of Economics; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Sarah Stewart-Brown


Warwick Medical School

October 2012

NBER Working Paper No. w18469

Abstract:     
Humans run on a fuel called food. Yet economists and other social scientists rarely study what people eat. We provide simple evidence consistent with the existence of a link between the consumption of fruit and vegetables and high well-being. In cross-sectional data, happiness and mental health rise in an approximately dose-response way with the number of daily portions of fruit and vegetables. The pattern is remarkably robust to adjustment for a large number of other demographic, social and economic variables. Well-being peaks at approximately 7 portions per day. We document this relationship in three data sets, covering approximately 80,000 randomly selected British individuals, and for seven measures of well-being (life satisfaction, WEMWBS mental well-being, GHQ mental disorders, self-reported health, happiness, nervousness, and feeling low). Reverse causality and problems of confounding remain possible. We discuss the strengths and weaknesses of our analysis, how government policy-makers might wish to react to it, and what kinds of further research -- especially randomized trials -- would be valuable.

Institutional subscribers to the NBER working paper series, and residents of developing countries may download this paper without additional charge at www.nber.org.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 26

working papers series


Date posted: October 20, 2012  

Suggested Citation

Blanchflower, David G. and Oswald, Andrew J. and Stewart-Brown, Sarah, Is Psychological Well-Being Linked to the Consumption of Fruit and Vegetables? (October 2012). NBER Working Paper No. w18469. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2164593

Contact Information

David G. Blanchflower (Contact Author)
Dartmouth College - Department of Economics ( email )
Hanover, NH 03755
United States
603-646-2536 (Phone)
603-646-2122 (Fax)
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany
Peter G. Peterson Institute for International Economics ( email )
1750 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States
Andrew J. Oswald
University of Warwick - Department of Economics ( email )
Coventry CV4 7AL
United Kingdom
523510 (Phone)
Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
Schaumburg-Lippe-Str. 7 / 9
Bonn, D-53072
Germany
Sarah Stewart-Brown
Warwick Medical School ( email )
Gibbet Hill Rd.
Coventry, West Midlands CV4 8UW
United Kingdom
Feedback to SSRN


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References:  26
Citations:  2

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