Obesity in Ameirca

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Did you know that 20% of Idaho’s population is obese? According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) approximately 127 million adults in the U.S. are overweight, 60 million adults are obese, and 9 million adults are severely obese. One-third of the American adult population is affected by obesity each year and is increasing. “The definition of obesity varies depending on what one reads, but in general, it is a chronic condition defined by an excess amount of body fat. A certain amount of body fat is necessary for storing energy, heat insulation, shock absorption, and other functions. The normal amount of body fat (expressed as percentage of body fat) is between 25-30% in women and 18-23% in men. Women with over 30% body fat and men with over 25% body fat are considered obese.”# Obesity is the second leading preventable disease in the U.S.. We chose this topic because as athletes representing Lewis Clark State College we think it is important to live a healthy life style.

Are you obese? This is a question that can be solved by a calculation. Divide your weight, in kilograms, by the square of your height, in meters.

Calculating BMI #

Top of Form 1

[Weight (lbs)￼ ÷ height (in)2 ￼] x 704.5 =￼BMI

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This is called your BMI (Body Mass Index). If the ratio is roughly 27 or more you are considered obese, but if the ratio is 40 or more you are considered severely obese. Other methods of finding out if you are obese is by your waist circumference, blood tests, or skin-fold measures. There aren’t any specific symptoms, but with obesity there are major health problems that contribute to the disease. Some risks from obesity are arteriosclerosis, sleep apnea, skin disorders, gallstones, type two diabetes, cancer (prostate, breast, uterus, colon, and gallbladder) arthritis, and depression. These risk factors will have a higher probability on an obese or overweight person with one or more of these health-related problems.

Obesity has been seen in America since the 1960’s, but now it has become a health concern. The CDC reported that in 2005 obesity would reach a 500,000 death toll , over taking smoking as the leading cause of death if the trend continued in 2004 of 400,000 deaths. There is no real reason or understanding why one culture will grow bigger than another, but it is obvious why a certain individual will gain weight.