A National Health Crisis : Obesity

852 WordsApr 30, 20154 Pages
A National Health Crisis: Obesity It is no secret that the food industry in the United States has many flaws and problems that need to be addressed. Among the worst offenders is the obesity problem that the American public faces due to our highly processed food industry. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately seventeen percent of children 2 – 19 years of age have obesity (“Childhood Obesity Facts”). This statistic gets worse as you look at the adult population of which about thirty five percent are considered obese (“Adult Obesity Facts”). While you may not be obese yourself, the obesity problem does affect everyone. In a research paper published by the Department of Health Policy at George Washington University, the average obese individual costs society an estimated $7000 a year or more due to lost productivity and an increase in medical needs. The paper notes that not only is obesity costing tax paying citizens more money, it also costs the obese individuals more money. Over the course of a lifetime, an obese person spends approximately $30,000 more than an average weight person in personal medical costs (Dor, A., et al.). Obesity and obesity related health issues are also responsible for an estimated 112,000 excess deaths a year (Flegal, Katherine M., et al.) One may blame the food industry as a whole as a problem contributing to obesity, and they would not be wrong. However, the main reason for the increase in obesity was the
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