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  1. History and Statistics

Obesity dates back to about 8000 years ago, when men started owning property, living in houses and owing animals. People considered obesity as a sign of wealth, beauty and health. People ate well back then, and obesity did not pose significant health challenge as it does today. Today, the change in eating habits and lifestyles is the main reason for obesity. A recent research shows that the foods consumed today have over 15,000 different chemicals, which do not break down in the body. These chemicals damage the bodies and make them out of balance, a sign of obesity

A new report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that an approximate of 42% of the Americans are likely to be obese by 2012. In 2008-2009, over 35% of American adults were obese, with 41million being women and 37million being men. The research also indicates that 16.9% of kids and teenagers are obese. The prevalence of obesity among adults was 27.5 among adults in 1999-2000, which represents a 7.5% rise over a period of 10years only. The current statistics indicates that 35.7% of adults are obese, and an estimate that 42% will be obese by the year 2030.  

Lifestyle and culture habits

Lifestyle and culture habits are the main causes of obesity. In today’s demanding society, people have turned to fast foods, which contains high levels of calories and fats that get deposited in the body tissues making a person obese. In addition, the working class people do not have the time to exercise; they drive to their places of work, use lifts, remain seated the whole day results in accumulation of fats in their bodies. Children sit in front of TVs playing video games and barely have time physical activities. Moreover, there are cultures that influence people to become obese. In some cultures, people believe that being obese is an indication of being wealthy. In addition, some culture feed their girls to become fat as they prepare them for marriage.

Fast Food Nation - Eric Schlosser

Eric Schlosser explains the influx in fast food consumptions. Fast foods infiltrated in all corners of the American society over the last three decades. They sell in stadiums, drive through, airports and schools. He estimates he Americans spends more money on fast foods than they spend in higher education, computer Softwares, or even buying a new car. Eating fast foods has become a norm and this explains why there obesity is increasing at a highly alarming rate.

Health problems    

Epidemiology

The Epidemiology of obesity helps us to understand the current trend in obesity across the globe. Obesity is increasing at an alarming rate in many countries. In the US, is is common to find children who are overweight, while the reverse is true for China. Teenagers and adults are also becoming obese at a worrying trend due to the eating habits and lack of physical exercises. These trends expose the concerned people to serious health conditions like diabetes and hypertension.

Risk Factors

The risk factors range from environmental to genetic factors. Individuals whose parents are obese are more likely t be obese that children whose parents are not obese due to hereditary factors. Genes determine the metabolism rates and food conversion into energy. If the parent’s genes are not effective, then the children’s genes are likely to be the same. Failure to exercise and involve in physical activity is another risk factor that exposes people to obesity. Sometimes, some medications like steroid, antiseizure medication and antidepressants can result to obesity. Attempts to quit smoking also expose people to obesity since it is associated with weight gain. Unhealthy diet, eating habits and family lifestyles are other factors that expose people to obesity.

Diagnosis – We are what we eat

 Environment –Beer, BBQ, and Burgers Texas style

All types of snacks, burgers and BBQ, are available is restaurants, drive ways, schools, office canteen and airports. These offer ready solution for someone looking for a bite to suppress hunger. Consequently, the fats and calories from these foods get deposited in the body, with minimal breakdown. People take lots of beer these days, even during working hours. The result of this is obesity, which confirms that we are what we eat.

The fast food trap

People attempt to lose weight by skipping meals through the day. This results to carving for salty and high energetic foods. Such people are not able to resist the temptation to get into a fast food shop and get some snacks. This becomes a routine, and eventually they become addicted. This becomes the fast food trap and the people become more obese instead of the initially desired result to lose weight.

Cure – We can we do to help ourselves

Behavior modification

Counseling

Counseling and therapy sessions help one to identify and deal with emotional and behavioral issues relating to over eating. Councilors and therapists teach one how to deal with fast food cravings anxiety that lead someone to overeating.

Support groups

Support group offer encouragement and moral support to obese people. This encourages them to deal with their issues while understanding that they are not alone. In such groups, obese people meet people who have successfully lost weight, which is immensely encouraging.

Exercise, activity, Medication

Obese people need as high as 300minutes per week to lose significant weight. This is an approximate of one hour for five days a week. In one is not exercising, he or she should start with 250hours and increase gradually. If it not possible to get one full hour, then a person can break the exercises into sessions. Exercises help to breakdown calories decreasing the body weight. In addition, one can use medication like Orlistat, which obstructs absorption of fats into the body.

 Key People

Education

Scott and white offer programs that help in behavior and lifestyle modification, helpful in dealing with obesity. These program referred to as MEND, incorporates the mind, Exercise, Nutrition and Do It to fight obesity. Michael and Susan Dell Foundation also offer programs that promote healthy eating and exercising habits and prevention of tobacco in schools as efforts to fight obesity among children.

Walking Obesity Research Study

Exercising for obese people can be painful, difficult and frustrating especially when it relates to working. This study aimed at increasing exercise tolerance, confidence and ability for obese people to exercise, and decrease pain and heart rate during exercise. This findings of this study tremendously helped obese people to exercise and shed some weight.

Prevention – What can we do to help ourselves?

Anti-Obesity Efforts

Every person in the society should be involved in anti-obesity efforts. People should avoid the constant visit to the fast food shops, avoid whole day sitting in front of the television and drinking beer. Education should be undertaken to enlighten people on the anti-obesity efforts to enable them prevent obesity.

Key People

Texas Senator John Cornyn introduced the Workforce Health Improvement Program (WHIP) Act, which aims to promote employee wellness at the work places. The act takes significant efforts to remove barriers to wellness of all staffs.

 Healthier options

People need to adopt healthier life options so that they can keep obesity at bay. People should adopt healthy eating habit, exercise regularly and working class people consider using the staircase instead of lifts to burn the excess fat deposits. 

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