Essay on Obesity Numbers

Submitted By abbyweiler
Words: 1121
Pages: 5

Every year 300,000 lives are lost to obesity and it is the second most preventable disease in America. If people are willing to try and become thin and healthy the number of lives lost annually would decrease. Fat is essential to the body’s function, excess fat still puts people at risk. Although some people think the government should leave it to the individuals to take personal responsibility for their health and what they eat, the government should neutralize the influence of the food industry in determining what Americans eat, in order to stem the alarming rise in obesity related illness.

Obesity is when a person is retaining more energy from food than they use and are 20 percent or more over the recommended body weight. Some physicians believe obesity is a disease a person is born with. When a person is obese they are put at risk for heart disease, high-blood pressure, diabetes, and certain types of cancer. In 18th century Europe being heavier was a good thing, it was a sign of wealth because it meant that you were able to afford food. When food became easier to produce and manufacture in the 19th century the idea of being thin was the more sought after thing but with the easier and cheaper way to get food this idea was hard for most American’s to achieve. In the 1950’s the AMA (American Medical Association) issued a warning to Americans about how excessive weight can lead to heart disease. Eating disorders such as anorexia, nervosa, and bulimia began to show up in the late 1900’s due to the cultural influence of being thin. “They say that young girls learn through images in the media that they are most valued for their physical appearance, and that extreme thinness is attractive.” (endnote from eating disorders) Then in the 1990’s diet drugs began making an appearance. Many of the drugs were removed from the market due to health issues and 32% of people who used a diet drug showed heart valve abnormalities. The current life is less physically active due to the less physical jobs and the dependency on technology. If the American diet doesn’t chance then the countries obesity rate will continue to rise.

Some physicians believe that obesity isn’t the issue but that the fitness level of a person is more important. The diseases that have allegedly been linked to obesity have declined over the last 25 years and studies show that an 11 pound increase in weight lowers a person’s chance of arteriosclerosis (a condition that leads to heart disease) by 10 to 40 percent. When the body fat is located around the hips and thighs rather than their stomach it can help lower their risk for heart disease, diabetes, some cancers, and osteoporosis. A person who is underweight or their weight fluctuates have a greater risk of heart disease and premature death than those who are slightly overweight. It has also been said that obesity is a gene people are born with and it’s a disease that some people can’t change. Some doctors want insurance companies to pay the cost for weight loss programs but they also believe heavier people will be discriminated against and charge more money. I can see how some physicians believe that some extra weight can be healthy because being underweight is even worse for you and that having some extra weight around your hips and thighs protects a person from diseases. Doctors also say that people who are underweight tend to have a shorter life expectancy than people who are slightly overweight. Society has created movements, such as the Fat Acceptance Movement that makes people think it’s acceptable to be overweight. This is not a good thing because obesity is an illness that is caused by a poor diet and exercise and the lack of nutrition. Obesity needs to be stopped before it becomes more of an issue than it already is.

People who are obese are at higher risk for diseases and illness than those who are an average weight.” Excessive fat intake is a leading cause of obesity, and can increase people’s