Obesity in America

The problem of obesity in the United States has become a major health concern, as being obese increases the risk of developing numerous diseases, such as certain types of cancer, coronary artery disease, type 2 diabetes, and stroke. These diseases not only lead to early mortality, but also have a tremendous economic impact. There are many reasons why obesity is a public health concern, and some of them are discussed in this article. However, what can we do to stop the epidemic?

Fast food

We’re bombarded with advertisements for fast food, pizza, and burgers. Fortunately, these foods don’t cost as much as other options and they taste good. Many people choose fast food for convenience, and the availability of take-out is widespread. Whether we’re tired of cooking or we’re working from home, many people choose fast food for convenience. And fast food outlets serve breakfast. Despite our best efforts, it’s virtually impossible to prevent childhood obesity.

Sugary drinks

The consumption of sweetened beverages, including soda, has increased significantly in recent decades, and so has the rate of childhood obesity. The drinks have many calories but little nutritional value. Even a 12-ounce glass of orange juice is 180 calories, while a 12-ounce can of soda has five times that amount. That’s the equivalent of 15 pounds of excess weight in a single year! And while juice may sound healthy, it’s not!

Salty snacks

A study on the relationship between salty snacks and obesity in America found that college students were more likely to consume snack products containing salt. The study included a questionnaire, which measured consumption of salty snacks. The questionnaire asked participants about their age, their body weight and height, their overall dietary habits, and their salty snack habits. The researchers also assessed participants’ knowledge about the nutrient content of these products and their perception of the quality of their diets.

Unhealthy diets

Research has found that an average American consumes 20% more calories today than they did in 1983. Meat consumption has grown rapidly since the 1950s, with an average American putting away 195lbs of meat a year. Added fat consumption has increased two-thirds and grain consumption has increased by nearly half in just forty years. Combined, these trends have made the average American more obese than any other time in history.

Sleep deprivation

Researchers have found that shorter sleep duration is associated with increased BMI and the risk of obesity in boys and girls. A meta-analysis of 12 studies linked sleep deprivation and metabolic syndrome. The study involved 70833 healthy controls and 18720 patients with metabolic syndrome. This association disappeared after a certain age. It is unclear if this association holds for older women. In adults, a longer sleep duration is associated with less weight and reduced risk of obesity.

Fruit and vegetable subsidies

The fruit and vegetable subsidy and the sugar tax have had a tremendous impact on obesity rates, increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables by 16 percent and 32 percent, respectively. Together, these policies have reduced the amount of saturated fat, salt, and sugar consumed by seventy-three and sixty-two percent, respectively. However, these results are far from conclusive. More studies are needed to fully assess the benefits of these policies, but in the meantime, the subsidies and the sugar tax may prove to be more effective than previously thought.

Big food companies

The rise of diet-related disease in the United States is largely a result of increased consumption of unhealthy food. Consequently, some politicians and nutrition experts are calling for regulators to rein in food companies. Some are introducing measures similar to those implemented on the tobacco industry in the 1990s, which discourage consumers from consuming key ingredients like sugar. In other cases, they are enacting new regulations to help curb the consumption of unhealthy food.

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