The Obesity Epidemic
Obesity in America is increasing at an alarming rate. This has been attributed by eating habits of individuals. It results from individuals consuming more calories than their body can burn and failure to do physical exercises. It has also had some associated diseases such as heart disease, stroke, certain causes of cancer and type 2 diabetes (CDCP, 2010). As a result, obesity and overweight conditions have become among the leading causes of death that can be prevented. This has costed the nation billions of money in medical expenses. Almost ten percent of the national medical budget is spent to treat obesity.
Its prevalence varies with age, cultural conditions, socioeconomic status of people and some groups of people. Obesity is more common in adults than in children. Approximately one in three adults and one in six children are obese. This is irrespective of their income and education levels. In men, obesity prevalence is similar across all income levels. However, it is more prevalent in non-Hispanic black men and Mexican-American with higher income than those with low income (McLaren, 2007). In women, obesity prevalence is low in high-income earners. In addition, it increases as income decreases. In men, there is no notable trend of obesity in accordance to their education levels. Women with less education are more likely to be obese than those with college degrees.
Obesity can be resolved through concerted actions that involve many sectors such as schools, communities and care facilities that are meant to control obesity. These concerted efforts will include physical exercises. The government should take part in increasing recreational facilities for physical exercises. Healthy eating of individuals is a good control of obesity. This will include eating fruits, vegetables and drinking water instead of sugared drinks. In schools, there should be programmes that students learn about healthy nutrition as well as undertaking physical exercises. This will encourage active living, hence reducing obesity in children and citizens.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2010). Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. National Center for Health Statistics. National 5 Available from: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nhanes/nhanes_questionnaires.htm. Accessed November 18, 2010
- McLaren, L. (2007). Socioeconomic Status and Obesity. Epidemiol Rev 29:29–48. 2007.4.