The reasons why obesity occurs could be manifold, without any one specific reason. The concept of obesity encompasses various factors such as the integration of behavioral, physiological, social, cultural, genetic and metabolic elements…
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Obesity can be measured with respect to the BMI known as the Body Mass Index of an individual. Though the topic “obesity “has been much focused by the Physicians and various facts about it have been reviewed, obesity still remains as a menace which negatively impacts the health of most of the individuals who are addicted to the so called “junk food”. In this report, obesity is discussed as a Global health issue with specific focus on the United States of America. This report will discuss why it is considered a global health issue, pointing out the causes of this health issue, including the factor of wealth and will finally address the current strategies used in addressing the issue, including vertical or horizontal approaches. A Report on Global Health Issue – Obesity in America “Obesity is a complex multifactorial disease that develops from the interaction between genotype and the environment” (Liburd, 2009). The alarming fact is that, the prevalence of obesity is rapidly increasing in most of the developed and developing countries worldwide. Changes in the lifestyle of the individuals can also be accounted as one of the major reason for the issue. Considering the growing rate of this health condition and how it makes lethal effects causing various health disorders and even death, it becomes essential to educate the people about obesity. Thus after identification stage, effective and extensive research into the complex physiology could aid in overcoming the impact. “More than one-third of U.S adults (35.7 percent) are obese. Approximately 17 percent (or 12.5 million) of children and adolescents aged 2- 19 years are obese” (“U.S. Obesity Trends”, n. d). It has been statically proved that during the past 20 years there has been a steep increase in obesity in the USA and the rates keep on increasing day by day. In the year 2010, “it has been estimated 36 states had the prevalence of obesity of about 25 percent and more.” (Shah, 2010). This prevalence of obesity among children is widespread, although certain racial groups exhibit high obesity rates. “For example the Hispanic boys aged 2-19 years were obese when compared to the non-Hispanic white boys.” (“U.S. Obesity Trends”, n. d). Multiple studies have shown that obese children are likely to become obese adults. So, a similar trend can be seen among the adolescents as well, with the obesity rates rising from 5 percent in 1976-1980 to 15.5 percent in late 1990s and 2000s (Loureiro, 2004). One of the reasons behind the occurrence of obesity among the children and adults in America, and even around the world, would be the static way of life, with physical activities being reduced to bare minimum and with high calorie food consumption increased to high levels. Thus, the food habits play a major role in the prevalence of obesity which is emerging as a major threat to the country. • “Americans eat 31 percent more of packaged food than the fresh food items. • Less then 27 percent of Americans consume the exact ratio of meat and vegetables. • Americans consume six to nine pounds of chemical additives each year” (Shah, 2010) Recent studies revel the fact that the fundamental reason for the America’s obesity is the basic crops like the corn and Soya beans with which they produce the unhealthy, high energy and processed food. Thus, obesity is mainly caused with the consumption of processed food which contains chemicals in the form of preservatives which ultimately lead to the increase of fat level. From the above facts, it is obvious that most Americans consume much of the processed food with unwanted fat resulting in obesity. Thus, according to the Pan
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