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Obesity in the Uk

Essay by   •  April 6, 2018  •  Research Paper  •  1,949 Words (8 Pages)  •  158 Views

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It is estimated that over half the UK population will be

obese by 2030, using the health determinants model explain how each factor plays a role in obesity.

What is obesity

Nowadays the obesity is one of the biggest problems of the population worldwide. The Foresight Report (2007) has established that the UK population is very likely to become obese till 2050 (NHS, 2014). An obese person is someone whose body mass index (BMI) is higher than 30kg/m2. The most common way to measure the BMI is dividing a person`s kilograms with person`s height. If the BMI is between 25kg/m2 and 29.9kg/m2,she is thought to be overweight, and if the result is higher than 30kg/m2then she is considered obese (The Health and Social Care Information Centre, 2013). For example, 34.3 is person`s BMI with weight 98kg and high 1.69cm. With such a BMI this person is in the obese category. Being obese may cause very much health problems and life- threatening diseases such as type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, breast cancer, bowel cancer, stroke, etc. That is why it is very closely related to health. This brings the question what is health, and why it is important. Talcott Parsons (1971) defined it as “The state of optimum capacity of an individual for the effective performance of the roles and tasks for which (s)he has been socialized .", which means that people have different roles each day, for example, being a teacher, daughter, or dentist, and performing them means that people are in good health. There are many factors that play role in obesity, for example lifestyle, living circumstances, habits, etc.

Lifestyle

One of the major factors that plays role in a person`s good health is the lifestyle. Not having enough physical activities and consuming unhealthy food leads to overweight and later to obesity. The Department of health (2014) state that the normal time an adult should spend on exercises is at least 2.5 hours per week and for a child aged 5 or over the physical activity should be not less than an hour each day (NHS, 2014).

Poor diet is also an important key. Most of the people nowadays prefer to eat out, having a huge amount of food that can be full with sugars and preservatives, or consuming very often fast food late at night, which contributes in gaining weight. Friends and family can also influence people`s food choice. Children, for instance, do not have built habits about the food they consume. Usually they are having the same as their parents, and if the parents consume more fast food, the children will do it as well.

Nowadays with the development of the technology, most of the people are leading a sedentary lifestyle. If someone is working at the office, being less active during the day, the most common way to relax after that is sitting in front of the TV with a cup of tea.

Giving up smoking also can contribute in gaining weight. In order to replace the cigarettes, people turn to the food and they are looking to eat something on every hour or even less, so they can slake the nicotine hunger. A number of researches have shown that people who gave up cigarettes are with the highest BMI among smokers and those who never smoked before. (Fehily, 1999).

Age and Gender

It is a fact that female babies have more fat in their bodies than male babies while they are still in the mother`s womb but this body fat is changing occasionally with the children`s growth (Himes, 2010). Therefore there is a link between the level of obesity and the age and sex as well. As seen on graph below, there has been a vast increase in the percentage of obese people between 1995 and 2003 in almost all genders and ages. It is estimated that people aged 40 to 64 are more likely to become obese during this period of their lives. Pregnancy also can predispose women to gain lots of weight.

Figure 1: High Level Summary Of Equality Statistics. Key trends for Scotland 2003.

Genetic factors

However, there are also genetic factors. There are different genes and hormones, such as insulin, sex and growth hormones. They are working together with the leptin and should also be taken under consideration because they are closely related with the metabolism and the appetite. Leptin is developed by fat cells. This is the gene that transmits signals to the brain, telling it that the person do not feel hunger anymore. People, which leptin gene is not working properly, cannot feel satiation. Thus, they cannot stop eating. It is estimated that obese people have more leptin in their bodies but it is still unclear why they are not sensitive to it. On the other hand, the insulin is responsible for the amount of energy that is needed in everyday life. With the adipose people, the signals that are caused by it are sometimes lost, which contributes to some diseases (Better Health, 2014).

In fact, women have more fat in their bodies compared with men with equal weight. This is because of the greater concentration of leptin in females (Castracane and Henson, 2007).

“Prader- Willi syndrome” is a genetic disease which is related with a constant anxiety to eat. Although it is very rare, and only 1 out of 15000 children is born with it, it is a very serious problem. There are also hormone related diseases such as Hypothyroidism and Cushing`s syndrome that contributes in gaining weight (NHS, 2014).

Socio- economic factors

The socio- economic facts contributing adiposity are related with the family income, social class and occupation, and also the educational level. It has been established that the children who come from the poorest social class are more likely to become obese compared with years ago. Nowadays, the price of the food is very important for people with low income and they are conforming to it. They are buying ready meals, full with preservatives and additives because it is cheaper than buying every product separately, and prepare the food at home (BBC, 2013). Although, a research made by It is clear that people without an educational degree have lower income which is leading to inequality and deprivation. Poverty plays an essential

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