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Abstract

This paper presents an impact evaluation of three nutritional programs implemented in Puebla, Mexico, run by SEDIF, a social assistance institution. The present study uses both a propensity score matching and weighting in order to balance the treatment and the control groups in terms of observable characteristics, and to estimate, later on, the causal effect of the programs on different areas: food support, food orientation, education, and health. This investigation adds strong empirical evidence about the beneficial effects of nutritional programs on growth indicators (i.e. on anthropometric variables). In addition, it provides some evidence about the favorable impact of this kind of programs on food orientation outcomes, such as eating habit changes or diet diversity, variety, and quality. However, this study unveils only marginal effects on food security and detrimental effects on educational outcomes(specifically on student's marks). Finally, it does not provide conclusive effects on health.

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