Obesity Public Health Problem

Powerful Essays
Public Health Problem

Obesity in the US has become a critical Public Health issue that has raised concerns throughout the nation. An estimate 97 million adults and 12.5 million children in America are obese, causing more than 160,000 “excess” deaths a year (CDC). Obesity is defined as a medical condition where there persists a high excess of body fat, enough to cause serious health issues. Through a biological view, obesity is an energy balance problem. Extra energy is stored as body fat when the energy consumption surpasses the energy expenditure. Obesity is characterized through Body Max Index (BMI), distribution of fat, measuring body composition, and insulin resistance (WHO).
Obesity is a public health issue due to the complications it leads to later in life. Obese individuals are more susceptible in obtaining health problems such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, therefore have a higher risk of mortality (WHOgoogle). Yet not only is obesity a problem of the individual but of society as well. In 2008 US spent an estimated cost of $147 billion on medical cost of obesity, almost a 70 billion dollar increase since 1998(CDC). Both the detrimental health issues it leads a too and the excessive amount of cost it causes, obesity is epidemic that must be addressed.
Many factors including genetics, lifestyle, environment, and mental health can lead to this chronic disease. Obesity is a major feature in several syndromes, such as Prader-Willi syndrome which is a rare genetic disorder causing excessive feel of hunger and therefore overeating. By examine certain genetic patterns studies have also found that 80% of the offspring of two obese parents were obese (webmedcenteral). Although genetics does play a role in obtaining this ...

... middle of paper ...

...ease Control and Prevention. Retrieved May 18, 2014, from
Senauer, B., & Gemma, M. (n.d.). The Food Industry Center . Why Is the Obesity Rate So Low in Japan and High in the U.S.? Some Possible Economic Explanations . Retrieved May 18, 2014, from
The U.S. National Physical Activity Plan. (n.d.). The U.S. National Physical Activity Plan. Retrieved May 18, 2014, from
Warner, J. (n.d.). Chronic Stress Unlocks Fat Cells, Ups Obesity. WebMD. Retrieved May 18, 2014, from
What Causes Overweight and Obesity?. (2012, July 13). National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Retrieved May 17, 2014, from
Get Access