Exposure to Migration, Parental Human Capital and Children's Health in Mexico

Elizabeth H. Baker, Pennsylvania State University
Jennifer Van Hook, Pennsylvania State University
Claire Altman, Pennsylvania State University

We examine the role of having family members as United States migrants on overweight among children in Mexico and its interactive relationship with socioeconomic status. Economic development and globalization (e.g., international exchange of goods, populations and ideas) are associated with increases in the consumption of unhealthy foods and obesity, labeled the nutrition transition. The socioeconomic gradient in obesity has important implications during this transition, going from positive to negative. We find that having international family migrants has an interactive relationship with socioeconomic status, such that at low levels of socioeconomic status it is a risk factor, but at high levels it is protective.

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Presented in Session 42: Migration and Child Well-Being