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28 May, 2016

Fighting Obesity in Today’s Difficult World

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the difference between being overweight and being obese is defined by an individual’s body mass index (BMI) in relation to their height and weight. An adult with a BMI between 25 and 29.9 is classified as being overweight while a BMI of 30 or higher is defined as obese. In the years 2011-2012, 35.1% of adults age 20 or older are currently overweight and 69.0% are classified as obese. For children and adolescents, the numbers are also quite alarming, with ages 12-19 currently obese at 20.5% and children between the ages of 2-5 at 8.4% and ages 6-11 at 17.7% . There are a number of mitigating factors that come into play when analyzing the causes of obesity in the United States.

Genetics play a large role in obese persons, through disorders such as Bardet-Biedl syndrome and Prader-Willi syndrome. However, genes are only part of the equation, combined with behavior patterns and the environment of the individual, obesity can be a result of the inactivity of the individual along with that person’s living conditions, community, or school/workplace setting. These can all contribute to the energy imbalances that play a major role in the obesity of an individual. Some illnesses such as Cushing’s disease, psychological cause like depression, anxiety, or eating disorders, and binge-eating behaviors are all important factors that also come into play. Recommendations for reducing obesity in future generations starts with the implementation of nutritional standards in schools, along with school health services that keep track of students’ weight and BMI indexes. Parents, of course, should be the primary influence on keeping children from becoming obese by limiting junk food and fatty food and providing healthier options for meals and snack time. Encouraging physical activity is also crucial, limiting the amount of time children spend playing video games or on the computer at home will help them become more active as well.

Physical activity, even something as simple as taking a walk around the block is a good way for adults to adhere to these same practices and families should pursue these activities together to keep everyone healthy. Exercise is an imperative step to fighting obesity and some type of routine regimen should be followed in order to maintain a healthy BMI. Luckily, there are a whole range of ways to get the exercise that is sorely needed, both indoors and out. Some people prefer to get a workout at home, it avoids the hassles and pressures that come with going to the local gym. For these folks, some home fitness equipment such as a rowing machine from Row Flow can do the trick. Buying a machine for home use can afford those with active lifestyles or an aversion to working out in public the ability to get the necessary exercise from the comfort of home. Then there are those who like to get out of the house or office and get some fresh air with a morning run or perhaps an evening jog after work. Any of these methods can prove highly beneficial in the battle of the bulge.

Overweight and obese persons must be very cognizant of their conditions and the risks that come with being abnormally heavy. Working to lower body fat is a positive step in the right direction toward living a healthy lifestyle. It starts with eating right, avoiding the foods that promote obesity, and getting enough exercise each day. Those persons who are predisposed to obesity through genetics have an tougher uphill climb, but taking the right precautions can lead to complete success.