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Obesity as One of the Most Important Social Problems in America

  • Category: Health
  • Subcategory: Illness
  • Topic: Obesity
  • Pages: 3
  • Words: 1169
  • Published: 03 January 2019
  • Downloads: 32
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When most people think of contemporary social problems, usually obesity is out of the equation. Many people will think of corruption, racism and poverty. However, the rate at which obesity cases have grown in the modern society has made obesity one of the major social problems affecting the society today. Basically, obesity can be defined as metabolic disorder that emanates from eating too much energy packed foods while the physical output is little. In simpler terms, obesity is caused by consuming a lot of food and doing very little physical exercises to utilize the energy. When the energy stays unused in the body, is converted into fats that are stored in strategic places of the body. Gradually, the individual grows fat which is the condition called obesity. It is important to note that obesity can affect anybody regardless of their age but children and adolescents are the most vulnerable. As a matter of fact, the most cases of obesity among the black American society is made up of adolescent and younger children.

There are several factors that have contributed to the increase of obesity among the black American community. One of the major factors is the consumption of fast food which is a trend that has gained mass appeal among black Americans. As much as individuals may be oblivious of the effects that junk food have on their health, the rate at which the fast food are being consumed is alarming. For that reason, the cases of obesity have relatively increased as well. It is unfortunate that black parents are doing so little to contain this social problem. Parents should advice their children about their dietary habits or at least enroll them for some workout session in order to avoid obesity (Bailey, 2013). Among the black American society, body size matters a lot. In most black residents, smaller children have reported cases of bullying from bigger children. For that reason, many adolescents appreciate a big body ideally to avoid bullying. This behavior has however made the war on obesity hard since the young black American already have a perception that a big body is good for defense. In order to obtain a big look, the children and adolescents continually feed on high energy food but rarely perform work outs to distribute the energy around the body. The immobility coupled with poor eating habits therefore play a major role in promoting obesity among black Americans.

It is important to acknowledge the fact that obesity does not happen overnight. It is in fact a result of continued consumption of high amounts of calories and doing too little to break the calories (Barbour, 2014). Obesity in childhood therefore is linked to obesity in adulthood for some individuals. It is also important to appreciate the fact that the metabolism of people is different hence there are people who will become obese hastily than others. There reason that most cases of obesity affect children is because of their immobility and limited physical activities. Unlike children, adults have daily activities to pursue hence in the process; a lot of calories are utilized. This supports the reason why there are fewer cases of obesity among adults. According to the World Health Organization, individuals who were obese during their childhood have a greater risk of becoming obese in their adulthood especially if they expose themselves to the causative factors. It is factual that the black Americans make up a large portion of the unemployed masses in the US (Bailey, 2013). For that reason, unemployed black adults have a higher risk of becoming obese because like children, they do not engage in many activities that workplaces provide hence with time, the fat content in their bodies continue to pack until the individual become obese. Besides poor diet, there are many other factors that have led to obesity among the black American society. These factors include genetics, medical causes and the general lifestyle of an individual.

Genetics

People give various reasons when they find themselves in Obesity. It has been medically proven that there are very rare cases of genetic conditions that lead to obesity. One of such genetic conditions is called Prader-Willi syndrome which is very rare. This eliminates the conception that some people cannot lose weight because it is in their genes. However, it may be true that some traits are passed down from the parents to their children which explains why we have families where all individuals are big or obese (Carson, 2014). Still the genetic aspect is mild and such instances could be cause by the family’s lifestyle or appetite that makes the individuals find it hard to lose weight. Genetics play a very little role in the spread of obesity.

Medical reasons

Some underlying medical disorders may play a significant role in gaining weight among some individuals. One of the common conditions that have promoted obesity is hypothyroidism where enough hormones are not produced by the thyroid glands. Another disorder is called Cushing’s syndrome that results to excessive production of steroid hormones. These conditions can greatly affect an individual since they can cause massive weight gain. However, when diagnosed, the conditions can be treated or controlled to avoid obesity. It has also been noted that Para pharmacy which is consumption of many prescription drugs can alter the body’s metabolism and result to gaining weight. Some of the medicines that one should be cautious when using include diabetic drugs, epileptic drugs, corticosteroids and mental illness drugs (Bailey, 2013). These drugs have been proven to increase an individual’s weight over time.

Effects of Obesity

Besides the social stigma and low esteem that obesity causes, there are more negative health effects that it brings. Obesity claims more than 300,000 lives annually and wastes more than $150 billion in treating related diseases. One of the conditions that obesity causes is High blood pressure. This is due to the additional fat tissues in the circulatory system that narrows the blood vessels hence increasing the pressure of blood. More pressure also affects the heart rates as well exerting pressure on the walls of the arteries. Obesity also causes type 2 diabetes (Barbour, 2014). As much as this condition affects adults, cases have been reported where children suffer from this disorder. Obesity causes insulin resistance which means that the blood sugar remains unregulated. For that reason blood sugar levels increase resulting to the condition.

These factors and effects support the hypothesis that childhood obesity is linked to adulthood obesity. This is because the causative factors are static. When both adults and children are exposed to the same factors, they are all likely to be obese. On the other hand, genetic as stated earlier is not a major factor that leads to obesity. For that reason, obesity cannot be passed down from the parent to the children. Besides the rare medical and genetic causes, poor dietary habits remain to be the main cause of obesity among the black American society. Obesity remains to be a persistent social problem today especially due to the effects it brings with it.

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"Obesity as One of the Most Important Social Problems in America." GradesFixer, 03 Jan. 2019, https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/obesity-as-one-of-the-most-important-social-problems-in-america/. Accessed 22 October 2019.
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