Ryan K. Masters
Robert Wood Johnson Health and Society Program Scholar, Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy, Columbia University
Nineteen cross-sectional, nationally representative waves of the National Health Interview Survey (1986-2004) were linked to individual mortality records at the National Death Index (NDI) through 2006, and examined for age and cohort patterns in obesity's effect on U.S. mortality
Previous research that did not properly account for age variation in obesity's effect on mortality and/or cohort variation in the prevalence of obesity have underestimated the impact of the obesity epidemic on U.S. mortality. Methods that appropriately account for these factors estimate obesity to play a much larger role, placing it at the forefront of concern for public health action.