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Health Program Evaluation: The Issue of Obesity Among Kids - Essay Example

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The goal of this essay is to highlight the problem of obesity among children and investigate how it could be addressed. The essay will assess the "Fit Kids" as a health program. The writer claims that programs like Fit Kids have a chance to turn this issue around before it is too late.  …
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Health Program Evaluation: The Issue of Obesity Among Kids
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Fit Kids
Obesity has become a major issue all across the world. Ever country is dealing with it. However, the United States is number one on the list for numbers. The worst part of it though is that a major number of those obese people are children. There are many tragic results for children as well as adults with obesity. Thos include the fact that they are 12 times more likely to get type II diabetes (Reilley, 2001). There are also many social and psychological consequences which include stigmatization, discrimination, and prejudice. Obesity is linked with low self-image, low self-confidence, and depression in children as well as adults. These same problems cause difficulty in school and affect the level of job held because of education. Therefore, there is a direct effect on the number that live in poverty later in life (Kellow, 2010). Coronary heart disease becomes their number one cause of death. Healthy people 2010 made it one of the priorities to build programs that decrease the numbers of obese children. This led to Congress enacting money for Fit Kids. This paper will discuss Fit Kids as a health program.
Studies show that childhood obesity is caused by children taking in more calories than they are using. There are some genetic factors but scientists believe that the rise in obesity has happened too fast to be attributed to genetic factors (Reiley, 2001). This then, is a disease attributed to increased calories and decreased activity.
The goal and mission statement for Fit Kids is "to motivate, teach and guide children to establish a solid foundation of sound nutrition and healthful lifestyle habits. " It must be remembered that health promotion is about health not illness so this is a great mission statement as it pertains to the health of the children and never mentions the obesity. It is an organized program that is set up for afterschool use as many of the studies show that in school programs work some but when the kids get home they make up the difference that might have been made by going back to poor habits there. The goal then becomes, short term to keep the kids active, changing their lifestyle and long term, teaching them good habits that they will carry with them into life.
This program supports the children with help with their schoolwork as well as many of these children have had such poor self esteem that they have done poorly in school. They have special cooking classes in which they learn to make healthy snacks and they have at least one hour of healthy exercise. This does not have to be jumping jacks etc but is usually a sport or other participative activity that keeps them moving. One of the best things about the program is that it is supported by the government and by the American Heart Association and American Diabetes Association so there are many resources. Each of these programs that is up and running has occasional hero visits. These are visits from football players etc that they kids really want to meet. They come and visit with them but at the same time they encourage activity while they are there like playing basketball with them(fitkids.gov).
In conclusion, obesity in children is at epidemic stage in the world. The effects of this are many and certainly creates a long term effect that is almost unimaginable with long term effects on joints, heart and brain. Children who will not be able to support themselves and will need tremendous amounts of healthcare resources. Programs like Fit Kids have a chance to turn some of that around before it is too late.
Resources
Kellow, J (2010) Childhood Obesity. Dietitian Resources. [http://dietitian resources.co.uk) [accessed March 11, 2010]
Reilly, J. (2003). Childhood Obesity. Postnote. Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology. [Accessed March 10, 2010]
http://www.fitkids.gov [accessed March, 22, 2010] Read More
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