Obesity: A Growing Problem in America

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“Today, 800 million people are chronically hungry and yet there are many countries where more than 70% of the adult population is obese or overweight,” Said by Margaret Chan in “Obesity and Diabetes: The Slow-Motion Disaster”. Obesity is growing in adults and children across the country at alarming rates. Parents and the children’s educators influence bad eating habits on children causing obesity rates to fluctuate to an all-time high. America’s on-going problem with obesity is harmful to all generations and can cause a higher risk for other diseases.

History of Obesity in America

The amount of people who are over-weight now is alarming compared to how it was fifty years ago. Obesity in the 1950s was becoming more common in America and new medical ideas were surfacing over obesity. According to Rasmussen, at the time, obesity was categorized as people with ten percent excess weight over the ideal weight someone should be (219). In brief, there were fewer corpulence adult Americans than there is today. Rasmussen compared obesity to alcoholism on how it is just as addictive as drinking. In the mid nineteenth century, the state and local public health departments enforced “self- help” classes for Americans to fix the “emotional disturbances”.

In addition, the state wanted to motivate over- weight people to be the ideal weight with advertisement. Magazines in the 1950s were promoting “will power” and how it was the only way to be cured and be a healthy weight (220). Many people in that time period did not have an abundance of information on obesity. Also, because obesity was not as common as it is today, there was fewer dieting information for people to rely on. However, will power is still a very common factor in pushing for weight loss and healthy living.

Obesity in America Today

The main problem with obesity today is caused by parents and educators not instilling a healthy eating lifestyle. A study from the National Center for Health Statistics at the CDC showed that adult Americans at least twenty years old that 39.6% were obese as of 2015-2016. With this in mind, child obesity rates are seven teen percent from ages two to nineteen years old. Other studies have also been done, including one that surveys the accessibility of healthier food choices and places to exercise for younger children (Rapaport par. 14).

“Even so, the results of both studies suggest that more must be done to combat childhood obesity, said Dr. David Ludwig, author of an accompanying editorial an obesity researcher at Boston Children’s Hospital” (Rapaport par. 17). By enhancing the food supply of schools and set aside a time for recess in an outside setting, people believe that the result of the obesity charts will go down (Rapaport par. 18). Schools and administrations could easily fight obesity with longer mandatory recess and physical education classes. From Durham, North Carolina, Asheley Cockrell Skinner of Duke University believes it is very disappointing on how the efforts that the university is taking to upgrade healthy living habits, is not impacting the country how they hoped it would (Rapaport par. 4 and 5).

What is the Effect of Obesity

Obesity being a serious chronic disease, it can have many negative effects on the human body including heart disease, type two diabetes, and bone and joint disease. Consequently, Chan says that every year diabetes can cause an estimated 1.5 million deaths resulting from obesity (13). In “The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism” George A. Bray says, “Effects of obesity result in two factors: the increased mass of adipose tissue and the increased secretion of pathogenic products from enlarged fat cells.” According to Margaret Chan, the costs for diabetes resulting from corpulence can alone take up twenty percent of the health care budget (12). In addition, people view effects of obesity from the looks on the outside appearance. But, in reality the fatal issue is the effects of what is happening inside of the body.

Americas rapidly growing problem with obesity effects all generations and cause a higher risk for other diseases. Becoming obese at a younger age can increase developing a disease at a higher risk. Overall, obesity is an addictive behavior comparable to alcoholism and is harmful to the body. This addiction can start at a young age from parents and educators imprinting children on unhealthy eating patterns. As a result, obesity can not only effect someone’s health, but also can affect the future family’s health with ongoing repetition of unhealthy eating.

Working Bibliography

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  11. Rapaport, Lisa. “U.S. Childhood Obesity Rates Rising Again.” Reuters, 2017, www.reuters.com/article/us-health-kids-obesity/u-s-childhood-obesity-rates-rising-againidUSKCN1GB2X5
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  13. Rosas-Carrasco, O., et al. “overweight and Obesity as Markers for the Evaluation of disease Risk in Older Adults.” Journal of Nutrition, Health & Aging, vol. 16, no. 1, Jan. 2012, pp. 14-20, doi:10.1007/s12603-012-0001-8.
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Obesity: A Growing Problem in America. (2021, Feb 28). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/obesity-a-growing-problem-in-america/

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