Genetics: How the American Lifestyle Contributes to Obesity ?
Obesity in America is a continuing crisis that is approaching epic proportions. According to recent studied by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly 400,000 Americans die every year from obesity-related diseases and complications. In total, close to $1.25 billion per year is spent on health care for obesity-related costs. This paper examines the causes of obesity and medical definition of obesity. This paper also provides a survey of the lifestyle factors that have contributed to the rise in American obesity, specifically, increased food supply, lack of healthy fast foods, and an increasingly sedentary lifestyle. Research from several sources, including the CDC and a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), is used to support to thesis of the paper, which is that American culture contributes to the obesity epidemic. The paper concludes by providing several recommendations for combating obesity.
For the past several decades, The average weight of Americans has been increasing. In fact, a 2004 study by the CDC ranked obesity as the “number one health risk” facing Americans. Approximately 400.000 people die each year as a result of obesity-related health issues and these health problems cost the government nearly $125 billion annually (Ogden). Even more troubling are the increasing rates of childhood obesity, which affect more than 15% of the population under 18 (Obesity in America). The consequences of obesity are many and varied. Obesity leads to lower physical activity rates, depression, social anxiety, self-esteem issues and a significant diminishment in quality of life (Obesity in America).
One in four Americans are now considered obese and Surgeon General Richard Carmona has referred to obesity as a public health “crisis” (Oliver, 2006). The truth is that American culture has created an environment that promotes obesity and discourages a healthy lifestyle. For many years now, Americans have been told that they are too fat and only getting fatter. An estimated 25% of America’s children are overweight or obese, while an estimated 54% of American adults are obese, and another 22% are overweight (Hill and Peters, 1998). Yet the message doesn’t seem to be getting through, and according to certain projections, America’s teens are at risk of becoming the first generation in history to live a shorter lifespan than their parents (Oliver, 2006). Even First Lady, Michelle Obama, has taken up the cause with her new “Let’s Move” campaign, which is designed to get children up off the couch and exercising more (Let’s Move).
In order to truly comprehend the obesity-related health crisis, it is necessary to understand what obesity is and how it differs from simply being overweight. Overweight and obesity are both labels for ranges of weight that are greater than what is generally considered healthy for a given height. The terms also identify ranges of weight that have been shown to increase the likelihood of certain diseases, such as heart disease and other health problems, such as high blood pressure (CDC). Recently, medical professional have begun to quantify the differences between body weight by applying the Body Mass Index (BMI) system, which is calculated based on height and weight, and gender. A person is considered overweight if they have a BMI of 25 or greater and weigh at least 10% more than the recommended for their height and body type (Obesity in America).. Obesity is defined as a body weight of 30% or more than the recommended weight and a BMI of 30 or greater (Obesity in America). One drawback of BMI measures is that, although BMI does correlate with the amount of body fat, it does not directly measure body fat. As a result, some people have a BMI number that would identify them as overweight even though they do not have excess body fat (CDC). In addition to BMI, there are other methods of determining obesity, such as measuring waist circumference, hip to waist circumference ratios, skin fold thickness tests, and ultrasound technology (CDC).
There are a wide variety factors that contribute to the increasing rates of obesity in America, and several of them are unique to American culture. First, it’s no secret that American’s eating habits are highly unhealthy. Our luck in being a prosperous nation results in an over-abundance of food in both supermarkets and restaurants, particularly fast-food restaurants, and the portion sizes are often uncontrolled and unreasonable (Hill and Peters, 1998). The easiest choices for American families are often those laden with high-fat content, and menus often lack any offerings of palatable, low-fat choices. Americans are getting fatter because the foods they eat contain more and more fat. An Egg McMuffin sandwich from McDonald’s, for example, contains 25% of the recommended daily allowance (Self Magazine — You need an author for this). Studies show that a diet containing 35% fat or higher may contribute to obesity in sedentary animals, and this suggests very troubling implications for Americans consuming high fat diets (Hill and Peters, 1998). Unfortunately, many American adults and children are also living a more sedentary lifestyle due, in part, to advances in technology and transportation and the wide appeal of sedentary entertainment options, such as television, video games and computers.
The first step to obesity prevention is a healthier diet and increased exercise. The science is simple: Studies show that increased activity and improved aerobic fitness can significantly reduce body weight and prevent obesity, particularly in children (Epstein, Paluch, Gordy & Dorn, 2000). If the solutions were so simple, however, obesity wouldn’t be a major health crisis. The fact remains that cultural norms that have developed over the past fifty years make it difficult for many average people to control their weight. There are, however, several solutions to this problem. First, there must be education provided by companies in food industry. Companies and medical organizations should encourage controlled portion sizes and a reduction dietary fat content. Restaurants, parents, and schools must also make a concerted effort to provide low-fat foods high in nutritional values for young children. Educating children about healthy food choices and provide health food options will allow younger generations to form positive eating habits. Studies show that a combination of a healthy diet and regular physical activity most effectively treats and prevents obesity, regardless of family history. Physical activity should also be encouraged and schools should implement more rigorous physical education standards, and counter the appeal of sedentary activities by emphasizing the enjoyment of sports and aerobic exercise. In addition, and effort to shift the focus of social gatherings from food to more active pursuits, such as a family hike or game of soccer will help children develop a positive association with exercise. Offering public incentives such as lower insurance rates or more paid vacation time for healthy individuals may also improve parent and child health (Hills and Peters, 1998; Epstein et al., 2000).
Community-wide efforts need the cooperation of parents, schools, and other community institutions, such as churches or synagogues. Local governments and school boards, who are responsible for setting guidelines for physical education and recess times in public schools should also be involved in weight loss education. In fact, some state legislatures are considering bills that would set minimum standards for physical activity for elementary school children (Denver Post). All of these efforts will allow families to learn healthier habits and exact cultural change as new attitudes regarding diet and exercise are passed on to future generations.
Overall, obesity in America is a grave issues that, if left untreated, will have seriously effect the health of millions of Americans. Fighting obesity requires a tremendous amount of work by families, medical professionals, and by the food industry and education system. Researchers now know that genetic predispositions to obesity can be avoided by cultivating certain habits, such as “restrained eating” and regular exercise (Hill and Peters, 1998). While obesity is, in essence, a disease, it is one of the most easily preventable diseases for those who approach it proactively. This may require certain departures from the American lifestyle and the cultivation of long-term changes in diet and exercise.
Centers for Disease Control. “Overweight and Obesity.” Retrieved on February 19, 2001 from http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/defining.html?
*Denver Post (2011). Colorado Physical Activity Bill Given Initial OK, The Denver Post Online. Retrieved on February 19, 2001 from http://www.denverpost.com/headlines/ci_17384956?
Epstein, L.H., Paluch, R.A., Gordy, C.C., Dorn, J. (2000). “Decreasing Sedentary Behaviors in Treating Pediatric Obesity.” Arch Pediatric Adolescent Medicine, 154, 220-226.
Hill, J.O., Peters, J.C. (1998). “Environmental Contributions to the Obesity.” Epidemic. Science Magazine, 280, 1371-1375.
*Let’s Move (2011). “Let’s Move: America’s Move to Raise a Healthier Generation of Kids.” Retrieved February 19, 2001 from www.letsmove.gov?
Neporent, L. “Lack of Sleep Linked to Childhood Obesity.” ABC News/Health. 24, Jan. 2011 Retrieved February 14, 2011 from http://abcnews.go.com/Health/lack-weekend-catch-sleep-risk-childhood-obesity/story?id=12743677?
*Obesity in America.(2011). Understanding Obesity. Retrieved Feb. 14, 2011 from http://www.obesityinamerica.org/understandingObesity/index.cfm?
Ogden CL, Carroll MD, Curtin LR, McDowell MA, Tabak CJ, Flegal KM. 2006; “Prevalence of overweight and obesity in the United States, 1999 — 2004”,. Journal of the American Medical Association. 295:1549 — 55.
Oliver, J.E. (2006). “Fat Politics: The Real Story behind America’s Obesity Epidemic.” New York: Oxford University Press, Inc.
*Self Magazine (2011) “Self Nutrition Data: Know What you Eat” Retrieved February 19, 2011 from http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/foods-from-mcdonalds/6262/2
Are you busy and do not have time to handle your assignment? Are you scared that your paper will not make the grade? Do you have responsibilities that may hinder you from turning in your assignment on time? Are you tired and can barely handle your assignment? Are your grades inconsistent?
Whichever your reason is, it is valid! You can get professional academic help from our service at affordable rates. We have a team of professional academic writers who can handle all your assignments.
Students barely have time to read. We got you! Have your literature essay or book review written without having the hassle of reading the book. You can get your literature paper custom-written for you by our literature specialists.
Do you struggle with finance? No need to torture yourself if finance is not your cup of tea. You can order your finance paper from our academic writing service and get 100% original work from competent finance experts.
While psychology may be an interesting subject, you may lack sufficient time to handle your assignments. Don’t despair; by using our academic writing service, you can be assured of perfect grades. Moreover, your grades will be consistent.
Engineering is quite a demanding subject. Students face a lot of pressure and barely have enough time to do what they love to do. Our academic writing service got you covered! Our engineering specialists follow the paper instructions and ensure timely delivery of the paper.
In the nursing course, you may have difficulties with literature reviews, annotated bibliographies, critical essays, and other assignments. Our nursing assignment writers will offer you professional nursing paper help at low prices.
Truth be told, sociology papers can be quite exhausting. Our academic writing service relieves you of fatigue, pressure, and stress. You can relax and have peace of mind as our academic writers handle your sociology assignment.
We take pride in having some of the best business writers in the industry. Our business writers have a lot of experience in the field. They are reliable, and you can be assured of a high-grade paper. They are able to handle business papers of any subject, length, deadline, and difficulty!
We boast of having some of the most experienced statistics experts in the industry. Our statistics experts have diverse skills, expertise, and knowledge to handle any kind of assignment. They have access to all kinds of software to get your assignment done.
Writing a law essay may prove to be an insurmountable obstacle, especially when you need to know the peculiarities of the legislative framework. Take advantage of our top-notch law specialists and get superb grades and 100% satisfaction.
We have highlighted some of the most popular subjects we handle above. Those are just a tip of the iceberg. We deal in all academic disciplines since our writers are as diverse. They have been drawn from across all disciplines, and orders are assigned to those writers believed to be the best in the field. In a nutshell, there is no task we cannot handle; all you need to do is place your order with us. As long as your instructions are clear, just trust we shall deliver irrespective of the discipline.
Our essay writers are graduates with bachelor's, masters, Ph.D., and doctorate degrees in various subjects. The minimum requirement to be an essay writer with our essay writing service is to have a college degree. All our academic writers have a minimum of two years of academic writing. We have a stringent recruitment process to ensure that we get only the most competent essay writers in the industry. We also ensure that the writers are handsomely compensated for their value. The majority of our writers are native English speakers. As such, the fluency of language and grammar is impeccable.
There is a very low likelihood that you won’t like the paper.
Not at all. All papers are written from scratch. There is no way your tutor or instructor will realize that you did not write the paper yourself. In fact, we recommend using our assignment help services for consistent results.
We check all papers for plagiarism before we submit them. We use powerful plagiarism checking software such as SafeAssign, LopesWrite, and Turnitin. We also upload the plagiarism report so that you can review it. We understand that plagiarism is academic suicide. We would not take the risk of submitting plagiarized work and jeopardize your academic journey. Furthermore, we do not sell or use prewritten papers, and each paper is written from scratch.
You determine when you get the paper by setting the deadline when placing the order. All papers are delivered within the deadline. We are well aware that we operate in a time-sensitive industry. As such, we have laid out strategies to ensure that the client receives the paper on time and they never miss the deadline. We understand that papers that are submitted late have some points deducted. We do not want you to miss any points due to late submission. We work on beating deadlines by huge margins in order to ensure that you have ample time to review the paper before you submit it.
We have a privacy and confidentiality policy that guides our work. We NEVER share any customer information with third parties. Noone will ever know that you used our assignment help services. It’s only between you and us. We are bound by our policies to protect the customer’s identity and information. All your information, such as your names, phone number, email, order information, and so on, are protected. We have robust security systems that ensure that your data is protected. Hacking our systems is close to impossible, and it has never happened.
You fill all the paper instructions in the order form. Make sure you include all the helpful materials so that our academic writers can deliver the perfect paper. It will also help to eliminate unnecessary revisions.
Proceed to pay for the paper so that it can be assigned to one of our expert academic writers. The paper subject is matched with the writer’s area of specialization.
You communicate with the writer and know about the progress of the paper. The client can ask the writer for drafts of the paper. The client can upload extra material and include additional instructions from the lecturer. Receive a paper.
The paper is sent to your email and uploaded to your personal account. You also get a plagiarism report attached to your paper.
Delivering a high-quality product at a reasonable price is not enough anymore.
That’s why we have developed 5 beneficial guarantees that will make your experience with our service enjoyable, easy, and safe.
You have to be 100% sure of the quality of your product to give a money-back guarantee. This describes us perfectly. Make sure that this guarantee is totally transparent.Read more
Each paper is composed from scratch, according to your instructions. It is then checked by our plagiarism-detection software. There is no gap where plagiarism could squeeze in.Read more
Thanks to our free revisions, there is no way for you to be unsatisfied. We will work on your paper until you are completely happy with the result.Read more
Your email is safe, as we store it according to international data protection rules. Your bank details are secure, as we use only reliable payment systems.Read more
By sending us your money, you buy the service we provide. Check out our terms and conditions if you prefer business talks to be laid out in official language.Read more