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Predicting Obesity in Young Children - Essay Example

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Deaths occur in both low and middle-income countries, and they can be prevented through inexpensive interventions. Obesity is a complex disease because it involves the interaction of genotype with environmental, social, behavioral, cultural, metabolic and genetic factors. In the USA, there has been a dramatic increase in obesity over the last few decades (Singh, Mohammad, Robert and Lava, 2011).It can affect all ages including children and the elderly (Caprio, Daniels, Diewnowski, Kaufman, Palinkas, Rosenbloom and Schwimmer, 2008). There are many controversial issues surrounding the dramatic increase of this health condition. In the year 2010, for instance, no state had a prevalence of less than 20% (National Health and Examination survey, 2010).Some people argue that the government should take charge of the situation, as it did with seatbelt usage and smoking. Others say obesity is the responsibility of the individuals who are obese. This is the point of contention in this research. The position I will take is that it is the responsibility of the government to manage and control obesity. The government should enact laws to protect its citizens from this debilitating condition. Causes of obesity Studies of obese people have shown a direct link between genotype and obesity (Elks et al, 2010). There are genetic variations which are associated with adult obesity. The risk of obesity also increases in adults when one of the parents is obese; thus, the obesity status of the parent plays a crucial role (Whitaker, Wright, Pepe, Seidel and Dietz, 1993). This represents a good avenue for identification and timing of weight changes in life. The causes of obesity are reduced physical activity, increased urbanization; increased intake of salts, high-fat food, high-energy foods and intake of sugary soft drinks (Nielson and Popkin, 2004). Increased urbanization leads to utilization of free grounds for playing, consequently denying people places to play games. Physical activity is particularly important as it increases energy expenditure and it is a good tool for reducing weight if used well with dietary changes (NHLBI Obesity Education Initiative, 2000). Other caused by obesity is lack of supportive policies in transportation, food processing and education; and the distribution and marketing of commodities. Food marketing can have a negative consequence on the country’s diet and health, mostly affecting children. Marketing is overwhelming and is done in many forms that are called ‘stealth approaches’. It can erode the objective of a nation in strengthening healthier eating (Brownell, Kersh, Ludwig, Post, Puhl, Schwartz and Willett, 2010). BMI distribution of adipose tissue within the body is the most used indicator or predictor of obesity because it is easy to measure and relate to fatness (WHO, 2000). Body mass index (BMI) is given by weight in Kg divided by height in M2 (Angelo, 2010). People with BMIs of over 30 are considered obese (Angelo, 2010). However, BMI lacks sensitivity due to gender and ethnic differences that might affect differences in relative body fatness (WHO, 2000).Other methods of diagnosing obesity involve assessing of body fat content which is achieved indirectly through different methods such as dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA). ...Show more
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In the paper “Predicting Obesity in Young Children” the author analyzes obesity as a complex disease because it involves the interaction of genotype with environmental, social, behavioral, cultural, metabolic and genetic factors…
Predicting Obesity in Young Children
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