We explore whether higher levels of community social capital reduce the likelihood of being obese in the U.S. adult population. We also examine whether this relationship may differ by levels of schooling. Data come from the 2001 to 2005 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System for all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, and are augmented with a validated measure of community social capital, the Petris Social Capital Index. We find that greater community social capital reduces adult obesity risk, and has a larger effect on persons with more schooling. Social capital affects obesity through the promotion of weight-control efforts.
- Physical activity
- Social capital