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Revista chilena de nutrición

versión On-line ISSN 0717-7518

Resumen

CARO S, Juan Carlos. Social and behavioral determinants on nutritional health: evidence for Chile. Rev. chil. nutr. [online]. 2015, vol.42, n.1, pp.23-29. ISSN 0717-7518.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0717-75182015000100002.

Due to the nutritional transition in the last decades, the risk factors linked to food nutrition are in the spotlight of public policy and reduction of their prevalence is a key goal in the public health promotion strategies involving food security and nutrition (FSN). Understanding the factors underlying poor nutrition status is a must in order to execute successful policy interventions in the general population. This paper analyses the impact that social and individual behavior variables have on the risk factors linked to poor nutrition (obesity, high levels of cholesterol, glycaemia and sodium) using data from the National Health Survey 2009-2010 using a Seemingly Unrelated Equations (SUR) approach in order to have a consistent estimation outcome. Findings suggest that variables linked to social environment and individual behavior have a significant impact on the food-related health risk factors, taking account for social, demographic, genetic and economic controls. Unsurprisingly, when people underestimate their nutritional status, it conduces to a greater health risk, explaining up to 6 cms of abdominal girth and 3 points of the BMI index. Also, an insecure neighborhood and weak social networks explain part of the health risk. These results are a starting point to discuss the design of public policy regarding health and nutrition in order to promote the food security especially regarding information and education programs, where there is the possibility to strengthen the social support networks.

Palabras clave : health risk; nutritional status; food security and nutrition; Chile; poor nutrition.

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