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Overweight and obesity has greatly dominated media headlines all over the world. It is a common observation that at least two out of every ten people are overweight or obese in all parts of the world notwithstanding race, culture, and ethnicity. The major continents of the world namely Europe, America, Asia, Australia, Africa and Antarctica all continue to record higher incidences of obesity amongst their human populations and the United Nations team of experts on contemporary issues warns that the present figures of overweight populations is likely to double by the year 2015. Kathleen Wolin and Jennifer Petrellin described overweight as a “the twenty first century global health crisis in waiting” in their publication: Obesity: Science to Practice.
Overweight, clinically referred to as obesity, is defined as the excessive or abnormal accumulation of fats in the human body to the extent it presents health related risks such as heart disease, diabetes, complicated health problems and cancer. In the general sense, an individual is deemed obese or overweight when his/her Body Mass Index (BMI) exceeds 30 kilograms per square metre (30kg/m2). Several research findings in the health industry have shown strong multivariate correlations between overweight, reduced life expectancy and various illnesses such as osteoarthritis, heart diseases, obstructive sleep apnea, asthma, type 2 diabetes and different types of cancer.
Considering the detrimental effects on human health, several local governments and international agencies, health care providers and consumer protection agencies are doing everything in their powers to create awareness on the adverse effects of overweight on the health of their populations. Such health awareness and various obesity intervention strategies aim at reducing the number of individuals affected by overweight through promotion of healthy eating habits and a positive lifestyle among the populations.
According to Kathleen Wolin and Jennifer Petrelli (2009), overweight and obesity is the most widespread plague that beleaguers the American masses more than ever before. The findings of their research survey conducted in 2009 in different Federal States of the United States reveal that 35.9% of the adult Americans were overweight. The most recent statistics indicates that the figures of overweight Americans have been on the increase and it is estimated to be 38% of the entire U.S. population. The most appalling news, however, is that the overweight rate is expected to increase from 38% in 2010 to 42 % in 2030.
Reports from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also envisages that percentage of Americans suffering from chronic obesity (above one hundred pounds overweight) will also hit 11% in 2030 down from the current rate of 5.2%. The tremendous increment in the magnitude and severity of overweight in the U.S. is attributed to unhealthy lifestyle and eating habits such as increased consumption of fatty fast foods, inclusion of sugar rich foodstuff in family diet, and lack of physical exercise.
Following the sharp increase in the number of overweight American children, teens and adults, the United States health agencies in conjunction with the World Health Organization declared obesity one of the major health issues in the United States just like other common diseases.
Overweight, in particular, has been singled out by the American Medical Association as the number one risk factor for various chronic diseases that include but not limited to different kinds of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes. The American Medical Association is categorical that in the findings of their 2010 survey that of the people diagnosed with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, heart attacks and chronic depression, 46.2%, 36.4%, 21.1%, 6.3% and 23.3% are overweight. Needles to say, this trend also implies that the flaring rates of overweight among the American masses bears much connection with the ever increasing cost of healthcare provision and the burden of funding operations of the healthcare programmes by the State and Federal governments.
This is a clear indication that America cannot raise up a healthy population as desired should the larger percentage of its population increasingly succumb to overweight. In a bid to attain goals of its healthcare charter, the U.S. healthcare agencies must go out of its way to find a lasting solution to the pandemic that overweight is. The overweight intervention plans such as school based educational programs, public health educational and promotional initiatives and media campaigns against overweight and obesity, if designed and rolled out smoothly, will reduce rate of overweight in the American populations.
Overweight (commonly referred to as obesity) is a medical condition that develops from the accumulation of excess fat in the human body to the extent that it bears an adverse effects on health. America continues to record higher incidences of overweight amongst its populations and the present figures of overweight populations is likely to double by the year 2015. Overweight is the number one risk factor for various chronic diseases that include but not limited to different kinds of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and type2 diabetes, osteoarthritis, obstructive sleep apnea and asthma.
It has been established that the skyrocketing costs of providing healthcare services to the Americans is largely caused by the increasing rates of overweight. Therefore, overweight reduction and intervention plans such as physical training programs, media campaigns against overweight, educational programmes in schools and public dietary trainings should be designed by experts and get funded by the government in a bid to contain the ongoing escalating rates of overweight among the American population, children, teens and adults alike.
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