A new study has suggested that educational status could help protect women living in socioeconomically disadvantaged areas fight obesity.
The new report’ authors said that income and education are frequently used as markers for studying health inequalities, although they are ‘conceptually distinct.’
They said that it’s possible that education is a marker of an individual’s access to health information, capacity to assimilate health-related messages, and ability to retain knowledge-related assets, like nutrition knowledge.
Lead author Lauren K. Williams, Ph.D., formerly of the Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition Research, School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences at Deakin University in Victoria, said that education is particularly important for women with low incomes who live in deprived areas.
She said that the research team mailed surveys to a large random sample of more than 4,000 women, ages 18 to 45, living in low-income towns and suburbs in Victoria. Women reported height, weight, education and personal income.
The authors said that women of amplified disadvantage, those living in disadvantaged neighbourhoods with both low education and personal income, may be at higher risk for high BMI.