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Childhood Obesity in the US - Research Paper Example

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Obesity is an ever-increasing problem that poses health risks to the lives of many individuals. Contrary to popular belief, obesity does not remain limited to adults. Childhood and adolescent obesity has increased from the past thirty years (Caprio, et. al., 2008). …
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Childhood Obesity in the US
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Download file to see previous pages There is no agreement on the definition of childhood obesity. The Body Mass Index remains the most commonly used method to measure obesity. Other professionals also assert that a 20% higher weight of an individual of a certain height and age constitutes obesity. Others also maintain more than 25% for boys and 32% in girls (Emedicine Health, n.d). Obesity is not a problem of the under developed world. People in third world countries face the problem of malnutrition.
Obesity, therefore poses health risks to the lives of people in the industrialized world. In United States alone, sixty percent of adults and fifteen percent of children come under the definition of obesity (Tessmer, Hagen, Beecher, 2006). The health hazards related to obesity create problems not only for adults, but also for children (Caprio et. al., 2008). The issue of childhood obesity remains a very challenging one. The problem of childhood obesity is of increasing prevalence. Obesity does not only affect the weight of a person, it destroys the self-esteem of a person. “Diabetes, high blood pressure, heart diseases, and depression are some of the dangerous risks of obesity” (Tessmer, Hagen, & Beecher, 2006). Different reasons are associated for this ever-increasing problem. The paper attempts to discuss those various factors. Certain factors that deserve due respect include that of cultural factors, biological factors and socioeconomic ones, as mentioned in the topic. However, these factors are not solely responsible for obesity. Specifically, parental influences and attitudes also account for an increase in youth Obesity.
Many experts claim that the environment that individuals live in play an important part in determining the lifestyle of a certain person. The environment consists of culture. Sociologically, culture is a system formed by a common understanding. It also shapes the perspectives of different individuals inhibiting a certain society. With regard to obesity, different cultures have different interpretations. Some may consider obesity as a health problem, while others may not. Culture also shapes the eating and working habits of individuals (Caprio et. al., 2008). Illness and deviance form a major part of culture, therefore obesity has a strong cultural background. In some societies, obesity may come under consideration of deviance. Deviance is a divergence from certain norms and values of the society. Different ethnic groups also form different societies within a certain society, in this case the United States. Different cultural factors of various ethnic groups play a major role in a diverse society such as the US. In a country like United States, which supports different types of ethnic groups, different perspectives are most likely to occur. Culture variation therefore occurs due to migration. In addition, in the increasingly globalised world of today, culture has had a profound impact. Certain eating habits have developed because of increased international trade. Promotional food marketing has also occurred due to increased communication. Such patterns have contributed to unhealthy eating habits in the US (Caprio et. al., 2008). Values remain an important part of the culture of different societies. Although the definition of body size is generalized, different ethnic groups and populations have different perceptions about body size. Different ethnic groups reside in the US, for example, African Americans, Fijians, and sub-Saharan Africans among others. Generally, these groups prefer larger body sizes compared to Europeans. Therefore, perceptions of obesity differ. These perceptions have led to an increase in child obesity ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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This research paper was always my weak point. I could never finish it well. Still, after I found this precise document, I understood how it should be completed. So, I performed my research afterward and completed the research paper in several hours, instead of months as it was previously.
Childhood obesity is an increasing problem all over the world that affects an estimated seventeen percent of all children in the United States, which is three times the rate it was only a generation ago. Tessner and Hagen (2006, p.20) state that childhood obesity can have a harmful effect on the body of a child in various ways and it has been determined that these children are more likely to have high cholesterol and high blood pressure, which are risk factors for cardiovascular diseases.
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