The Effects of the Graduated Driver Licensing Restrictions on Teenage Obesity by Qihua Qiu :: SSRN

Little evidence exists on the association between driving and obesity among teenagers. In this paper, I estimate the effects of Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) restrictions on obesity prevalence among adolescents aged 14 to 17 in the U.S. My findings suggest that a mandatory holding period, nighttime restriction, or passenger restriction significantly raises adolescents’ probability of being obese by 1.57, 1.04, and 0.94 percentage points respectively, corresponding to increases in obesity rate of 12.6%, 8.3%, and 7.5%. These effects are generally stronger among male or white teenagers. Overall, I estimate that nearly 24% of the rise in obesity among teenagers aged 14 to 17 in the U.S from 1999 to 2015 can be explained by less driving due to the GDL restrictions. In addition, I find that the restrictions reduce teenagers’ exercise frequency while increasing their time spent watching TV, which may help to explain the adverse effects on obesity.

Source: The Effects of the Graduated Driver Licensing Restrictions on Teenage Obesity by Qihua Qiu :: SSRN

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