IJSSH 2016 Vol.6(10): 742-755 ISSN: 2010-3646
doi: 10.18178/ijssh.2016.V6.743

Inequality Analyses of Obesity in Turkey

Hasan Giray Ankara
Abstract—This study aims to explore socioeconomic and regional variations of obesity among Turkish women at reproductive age (15-49). Using the data from Turkish Demographic and Health Survey, it identifies the socioeconomic determinants of obesity in different regions with different levels of development. Afterwards, it measures income-related obesity inequalities by employing concentration indices. Finally, it decomposes the measured inequalities and obesity gap between eastern and western Turkey into percentage contributions of socioeconomic covariates. Accordingly, age, ethnicity, education, income, marital status and employment are significantly associated with obesity in Turkey. Inequality analysis suggests that obesity is more concentrated among wealthier women in eastern Turkey whereas it is more concentrated among poorer women in western Turkey. Decompositions of the inequalities reveal that the inequalities are predominantly associated with wealth and ethnicity. The findings imply that eastern Turkey reflects the characteristics with of developing countries while western Turkey is closer to developing countries. Therefore, the study suggests that designing specific policies for regions with different levels of development will be useful in reducing the inequalities between eastern and western Turkey. In this respect, it is believed that policies dealing with the nutritional issues of eastern women and policies encouraging healthy behaviour of western women may be useful in reducing the inequalities between eastern and western Turkey.

Index Terms—Decomposition, income, inequalities, obesity, socioeconomic, Turkey.

H. G. Ankara is with the Department of Economics, Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences, Hacettepe University, Turkey (e-mail: hasangirayankara@hacettepe.edu.tr).

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Cite: Hasan Giray Ankara, "Inequality Analyses of Obesity in Turkey," International Journal of Social Science and Humanity vol. 6, no. 10, pp. 742-755, 2016.

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