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Childhood Obesity Master - Essay Example

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Childhood Obesity Master

In the WHO Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health, the blame was placed on the excessive consumption of fat, sugar and salt, which is the result of the advent of an "obesogenic" environment, a condition that encourages the consumption of more energy food than is necessary20. Only a successful treatment of obesity in childhood may prevent severe diseases in later years.
Among the countries that has recognized obesity as a growing public health problem is UK, where the 2002 Health Survey declared that over half of the country's population was overweight or obese1. The National Office of Statistics (NOS) said obesity was affecting children more than adults, such that 22 percent of all boys and 28 percent of all girls in the 2-15 age bracket were either overweight or obese. Other independent studies16 noted that about 1 million of all obese persons in UK were less than 16 years old, indicating a steady and rapid yearly increase in the prevalence rate for child obesity in the country. The government projection is that by 2010, 1 out of every 4 adults will be obese. This translates to a cost of some 3.6 billion for the National Health Service and the economy as a whole through direct and indirect costs.
UK presents an interesting case for a country-specific study because it holds the distinction of being the country where the first obesity-related case of type-2 diabetes was reported12. This is an indication that obesity has become a runaway problem in UK, which is supported by recent public health bulletins expressing due alarm over the situation. An inquiry of the House of Commons health committee in 2003 established strong links of obesity with diabetes, coronary heart disease, cancer, arthritis and social and psychological distress among British adults. In the WHO Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health, the heaviest emphasis was placed on the contribution of excess fat, sugar and salt on the world's dietary health problems20.
For this reason, UK health authorities initiated studies to assess the overall situation so that it can be properly determined if an organized, resource-intensive and massive intermediation effort is warranted, and what particular strategies are appropriate. The studies examined the exact influences of diet, physical inactivity, nutrition and media on the supposed increase of obesity cases in UK. They sought to determine the magnitude and extent of the problem by underscoring the social and psychological factors that brought about and contributed to the situation. The effectiveness of the prevention and intermediation measures that have been tested for government adoption was also tested to see where start attacking the problem and where to concentrate the effort3. An enormous amount of scientific research has been done on obesity but there is as yet no consensus on what constitutes obesity, what are its exact causes and contributory factors, and how exactly does obesity deteriorate into serious medical cases. The only point of agreement seems to be that a determined and concentrated effort needs to be undertaken to arrest the ...Show more

Summary

The World Health Organization (WHO) has set obesity as the new crisis in public health, a problem approaching epidemic proportions especially in rich countries19,20. Childhood obesity is the locus of concern because it was ascertained that if a child suffers from this unhealthy weight condition, it often becomes irreversible and will be borne throughout adulthood…
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