Are All Proximity Effects Created Equal? Fast Food Near Schools and Body Weight Among Diverse Adolescents

Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 1-47, 2012

Posted: 29 Jul 2012

See all articles by Sonya A. Grier

Sonya A. Grier

American University - Kogod School of Business; American University - Center for Latin American & Latino Studies (CLALS)

Brennan Davis

California State Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo - Orfalea College of Business

Date Written: July 28, 2012

Abstract

Prior research demonstrates that the proximity of fast-food restaurants to schools is related to higher youth body weight and also suggests that this relationship may be stronger in urban areas. Research also suggests that some segments of youth may be more vulnerable to this relationship than others. We investigate the relationship of fast-food proximity to middle and high schools and adolescent weight outcomes, with a focus on understanding intra-urban differences across groups defined by ethnicity and school income. Results suggest that body weight associations with proximity to a fast-food restaurant from school are not equal for all youth. Black and Hispanic students at low-income and urban schools have higher associations between school-fast food distance and youth body weight, up to four times greater than general distance associations. We discuss findings in light of the complexity of understanding the relationship between retail marketing proximity and weight-related associations among youth, as well as obesity disparities.

Keywords: adolescent obesity, fast food, urban, ethnic minorities, low income

Suggested Citation

Grier, Sonya A. and Davis, Brennan, Are All Proximity Effects Created Equal? Fast Food Near Schools and Body Weight Among Diverse Adolescents (July 28, 2012). Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 1-47, 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2119252

Sonya A. Grier (Contact Author)

American University - Kogod School of Business ( email )

4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20816-8044
United States

American University - Center for Latin American & Latino Studies (CLALS) ( email )

4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20016
United States

Brennan Davis

California State Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo - Orfalea College of Business ( email )

San Luis Obispo, CA 93407
United States
8057561722 (Phone)

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