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Biological Health Risks and Economic Development


Frankenberg, Elizabeth; Ho, Jessica Y.; & Thomas, Duncan (2016). Biological Health Risks and Economic Development.. Komlos, John & Kelly, Inas R. (Eds.). Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.


With populations aging and the epidemic of obesity spreading across the globe, global health risks are shifting toward noncommunicable diseases. Innovative biomarker data from recently conducted population-representative surveys in lower, middle, and higher income countries are used to describe how four key biological health risks—hypertension, cholesterol, glucose, and inflammation—vary with economic development and, within each country, with age, gender, and education. As obesity rises in lower income countries, the burden of noncommunicable diseases will rise in roughly predictable ways, and the costs to society are potentially very large. Investigations that explain cross-country differences in these relationships will have a major impact on advancing the understanding of the complex interplay among biology, health, and development.


Reference Type

Book Section

Year Published


Series Title

Oxford Handbooks Online


Frankenberg, Elizabeth
Ho, Jessica Y.
Thomas, Duncan