The effect of education on health and health behaviors: Evidence from the college enrollment expansion in China
Jialin Huang and
Xinzheng Shi ()
China Economic Review, 2022, vol. 72, issue C
By exploiting the massive college enrollment expansion in China beginning in 1999, we investigate the effect of higher education on health and health behaviors. Using data from the China Family Panel Studies in 2018 and employing an instrumental variable approach, we find that higher education has a significant effect on health and health behaviors. Each additional year of education increases the probability of reporting good health and having good memory by 1.9 and 3.1 percentage points (pp), respectively. Moreover, it decreases the probability of being overweight, smoking, and drinking by 1.3, 2.3, and 1.2 pp., respectively. By comparing the effect size with the findings in previous literature, we conclude that the effect of education on health is greater at higher levels of education. Further analysis suggests that education may affect health and health behaviors through two channels: the resources acquired by individuals and the prices faced by them.
Keywords: Higher education; Health; Health behaviors; College enrollment expansion (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I12 I21 I23 I28 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:chieco:v:72:y:2022:i:c:s1043951x22000268
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