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The effect of prenatal exposure to Ramadan on children's height
Authors: Karimi SM, and Basu A
Source: Economics and Human Biology, 30:69-83; DOI: 10.1016/j.ehb.2018.05.001
Topic(s): Child health
Child height
Country: More than one region
  Multiple Regions
Published: JUN 2018
Abstract: We examine the effect of prenatal exposure to Ramadan on children's height by sex, age, region, and the degree of religiosity. Since Ramadan rotates on solar calendars, we pool demographic and health survey data from numerous developing countries to increase the number of birth years and fairly control for potential seasonal effects. Our results suggest that Ramadan-induced nutritional stress during early- and mid-gestation may negatively affect the height of 3 and 4?years old Muslim male children. The effect tends to be stronger in West Africa and Central Asia. It also tends to be stronger in more religious countries. We do not detect consistent negative effects on height in female children. KEYWORDS: Children; Height; Height-for-age Z-Score; Prenatal exposure to Ramadan; Religiosity