Prenatal Exposure to the German Food Crisis 1944–1948 and Health After 65 Years

36 Pages Posted: 6 Dec 2018

See all articles by Hendrik Jürges

Hendrik Jürges

University of Mannheim - Mannheim Research Institute for the Economics of Aging (MEA); German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin)

Thomas Kopetsch

Technical University of Dortmund

Date Written: December 4, 2018

Abstract

English Abstract: Using data on 90% of the German population, we investigate the long-term relationship between intra-uterine exposure to the German food crisis 1944–1948 and 16 doctordiagnosed health conditions at age 60 to 70. We find elevated risks of being diagnosed with a wide range of conditions, including diabetes, depression, lung disease, and back pain. In terms of critical periods, malnutrition in the first trimester of pregnancy appears to have the strongest negative correlation with health at older ages.

German Abstract: Wir nutzen Daten von 90% der deutschen Bevölkerung um den langfristigen Zusammenhang zwischen intrauteriner Mangelernährung nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg und 16 ärztlich diagnostizierten Krankheiten im Alter von 60 bis 70 Jahren zu untersuchen. Dabei stellen wir ein erhöhtes Risiko in Bezug auf die Diagnose einer Vielzahl von Erkrankungen, einschließlich Diabetes, Depressionen, Lungenerkrankungen und Rückenschmerzen fest. Die kritischste Phase bezüglich der negativen Auswirkungen scheint das erste Schwangerschaftsdrittel zu sein.

Keywords: Fetal origins, Nutrition, Health, Aging

JEL Classification: I15, N34

Suggested Citation

Jürges, Hendrik and Kopetsch, Thomas, Prenatal Exposure to the German Food Crisis 1944–1948 and Health After 65 Years (December 4, 2018). MEA Discussion Paper No. 07-2018. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3295652 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3295652

Hendrik Jürges (Contact Author)

University of Mannheim - Mannheim Research Institute for the Economics of Aging (MEA) ( email )

D-68131 Mannheim
Germany

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) ( email )

Mohrenstraße 58
Berlin, 10117
Germany

Thomas Kopetsch

Technical University of Dortmund ( email )

Emil-Figge-Straße 50
Dortmund, 44227
Germany

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