Nutritional status during an economic crisis: Evidence from Russia
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Between 1996 and 1998, Russia experienced a spectacular decline in economic activity which was followed by a dramatic rebound between 1998 and 2000. We use panel data to examine the impact of variation in household resources on six dimensions of nutritional status, distinguishing longer-run from short-term fluctuations in resources. Nutritional status is very resilient to short-term variation in household resources. Gross energy intake, adult weight and child stature change very little as expenditure deviates from its long-run average. Longer-run resources have a substantively large, positive and significant effect on energy intake, diet quality, adult weight and child stature. The evidence indicates that individuals and households are able to weather short-term fluctuations in economic resources, at least in terms of maintaining body mass and energy intake.