The purpose of this essay is to analyze the issues of obesity in America. The essay deals the various factors that contribute to obesity in humans. The essay further deals with risks associated with a person affected with obesity and overweight. It also talks about the preventive measures for reducing the chances of being obese.
Obesity, in simple terms, means to have fats in the body in an excess amount. Obesity and being overweight both imply conditions of a person to weight more than it is considered normal (Halfon, Larson & Slusser, 2013). Obesity refers to an excess accumulation of fats in the body or the Body Mass Index. However, it is not necessary that an overweight person must have an excess amount of fat accumulation in his body.
Since the last few decades, there has been an incline in the rates of obesity among the entire population group in the United States of America. Obesity can impose several risks that can give rise to health related issues. The health risks associated with obese and overweight can include excessive blood pressure, coronary heart diseases, hypertension, diabetes and other kinds of health issues. It has been observed that an obese person is usually vulnerable to health risks. An obese person is at a high risk of suffering from depression, as well as other social problem (Cunningham, Kramer & Narayan, 2014).
Several factors contribute to obesity in the adults as well as children. Among the several factors contributing to obesity, like age, race, family history, unhealthy living environments, gender, and the like, unhealthy habits or lifestyles have been an important aspect of causing obesity in the recent times. An unhealthy lifestyle implies activities such as consumption of unhealthy food, absence of adequate physical activities, insufficient amount of sleep, having high stress levels ().
In modern times, intake of fast food has been a trend, not only in the United States, but also across the world. People, nowadays, tend to intake more calories than necessary. The diets of people tend to include more Trans and saturated fats, as well as added sugars, which are harmful for the health (Marchus, 2014).
The effective and safe ways of controlling obesity and losing weight is to have a balanced diet, and engage in the reduction of the intake of calories, Trans and saturated fats and added sugars from the diet. An increase in the physical activities in the routine can also help to deal with the problem of obesity (Halfon, Larson & Slusser, 2013).
Obesity in the children can be reduced by encouraging more physical activities, providing food only when they are hungry and instructing them to eat slowly. Fruits and vegetables can also reduce obesity. Serving fresh fruit juice instead of canned beverages or sport drinks can prove to be beneficial. Obesity can be prevented in the adults as well by inclusion of whole grains such as brown rice, fresh fruits in the diet, keeping a check on the weight in a regular manner, engage in calorie burning activities, and others.
The Sociological theory that relates to the contributing factor to obesity would be structural functionalism. Functionalism has been a theory seeking an explanation of social organizations and changes in term of the role performed by various social institutions and structures (Ogden, Carroll & Flegal, 2014). Society has been a system of interrelated and interdependent parts such as organisms with institutions and groups, which contribute to the stabilities of the entire social system. According to this Sociological Theory of Functionalism, all of the parts contribute in the undisturbed functioning as well as heath and equilibrium of the societies.
The social factor remains to be important predictor of the body mass index. Obesity has been considered a public health issue and it has been a factor of risk for much chronic disease. Perceiving the environmental factor can provide to better understandings of the characteristics of obesity and help to tackle the problem.
Cunningham, S. A., Kramer, M. R., & Narayan, K. V. (2014). Incidence of childhood obesity in the United States. New England Journal of Medicine, 370(5), 403-411.
Halfon, N., Larson, K., & Slusser, W. (2013). Associations between obesity and comorbid mental health, developmental, and physical health conditions in a nationally representative sample of US children aged 10 to 17. Academic pediatrics, 13(1), 6-13.
Marchus, A. (2014). Obesity in the United States.
Ogden, C. L., Carroll, M. D., & Flegal, K. M. (2014). Prevalence of obesity in the United States. Jama, 312(2), 189-190.