Reducing The Spread Of Obesity

Decent Essays

The same components that are increasing the spread of obesity in social networks may be used to slow, and eventually reverse the prevalence of obesity among social ties. Cigarette use was incredibly common four decades ago, but smoking prevalence has dramatically declined. Cigarette smoking cessation is an example of a positive health contagion, where cessation spread rapidly through networks and pushed smokers to the outside of the network (Christakis & Fowler, 2008). A health contagion has not yet appeared to combat the majority of high BMI networks, but there are promising signals.
Obesity-related intervention strategies have displayed significantly better results when individuals are placed in a group compared to targeting one individual by a medical professional (Paul-Ebhohimhen & Avenell, 2009). Additionally, weight-loss group interventions can be successful online through social media platforms and have shown to increase physical activity levels at a significantly faster and higher rate than individuals alone (Zhang, Brackbill, Yang, & Centola, 2015). Individuals who are overweight or obese display an increase in weight loss indent when the surrounding social ties take part in weight loss behavior as well. (Leahey, LaRose, Fava, & Wing, 2010). Group obesity intervention may be a productive and efficient tool in the facilitation of positive health communication and a strategy for increasing the amount of pro-health behavior communicators in an individual’s network.

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