Economics: Intelligence predicst Health

ABSTRACT?Large epidemiological studies of almost an entire
population in Scotland have found that intelligence (as measured
by an IQ-type test) in childhood predicts substantial differences
in adult morbidity and mortality, including deaths from
cancers and cardiovascular diseases. These relations remain
significant after controlling for socioeconomic variables. One
possible, partial explanation of these results is that intelligence
enhances individuals? care of their own health because it represents
learning, reasoning, and problem-solving skills useful
in preventing chronic disease and accidental injury and in
adhering to complex treatment regimens.
Here is the full article (in PDF)

I find this interesting and may be a reason that intelligence has increased steadily over time. This is called the Flynn effect, where the global IQ seems to rise about 3 percent per decade at a fairly steady rate. Some say that the opposite should happen, that parents with higher IQs often have fewer children and thus the stupider masses who have many children should lower the average IQ score.
My pet theory is that people won't have sex with another if they are dumb or dumber than they are. In the past it was a little less obvious if someone was dumb or not. Now with standardized schooling, if you know that they weren't able to finished High School you may know a lot about their intelligence.
Being intelligent also allows you to better make informed decisions about health related issues. In this increasingly complex world where there is a lot of conflicting information, it's easy to choose badly. Like assuming that "God will take care of me", or not following a doctor's advice.
So in summary, our collective IQ is increasing steadily because dumb people are less sexually attractive and die off sooner because they don't follow the medical communities advice.
Via Marginal Revolution.


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