Ethics · My opinion

FAT WARS

color-obesity-recruiting

Is obesity a problem that requires government action, or is it a consumer choice?

Healthy lifestyle, obesity, overweight, exercise and regular activity are words that we all have been constantly hearing and reading from adverts, billboards, government campaigns, universities’ posters and much more.

 First of all, obesity is excess fat that usually relates to the increased weight-for-height that can have a negative effect on your health. You can measure obesity by calculating your body max index ( divide your weight(kg) by the square of your height(meters), combined with your waist circumference. What is not obesity? A healthy adult with some extra pounds.

 Obesity is an issue that is being constantly tackled by the government, according to Public Health England, the 2014 results showed that 61.7% of adults were overweight or obese with an increase of 10.7%  between 1993 and 2014. Success stories such as the “this girl can” campaign have managed to get 23% of women working out regularly.

 So if there is so much information, why doesn’t the consumer stop making unhealthy choices?

 In my opinion, there is much more behind the consumer’s food choices. Obesity can be influenced by social-cultural factors, many believe it depends on the race, ethnicity and socio-economic status of a consumer. Culture is very hard to change, even with campaigns and loads of information, the only person that can change it is the consumer. However, by tackling specific groups and providing organic and healthier options closer that are more accessible to them, can change the way they see and relate to food.

 Among many issues, the biggest concern around obesity are the health problems that it can bring  such as, diabetes, colon cancer, high blood pressure, breathing difficulties, bones and joint problems, stroke and heart disease. As you can see, the amount of health issues that can come with obesity are huge and can definitely shorten your life spam. Obesity can also bring emotional and behavioural issues such as; low self-esteem, bullying and discrimination.

 If it is something that is clearly bad for you, why do people still make choices that lead them to obesity?

 Several people think that to reach obesity it is the person’s fault as he/she wasn’t active enough or made bad food choices. Obesity can be genetic and it depends a lot on the person’s personality, environment and emotional factors. Some people when stressed eat (like me) and stress is the most common problem of developed countries.

 Individual food consumption is of course a consumer choice and will always be, because there is no one from the government by your side saying that you should not eat this or that. However, I think it definitely requires government action to help the consumers make healthier choices for their own good and get the treatment they deserve.

 I would love to know what you think, comment bellow…

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9 thoughts on “FAT WARS

  1. Hi Karima, first of all this is indeed a very important subject since knowdays it seems that obesity specially in kids is rising, so congrats on that part. Now, in my opinion of course that this problem starts at home with the parents. Its a parent job to educate the child but as we all know time nowdays is short as moms do those fast foods, fried foods, frozen foods that are easy, fast, and come on, you dont need to think a lot about “what i am going to do for dinner today?!” kids get used to that and then starts the “i dont like it”, i dont like fruit, i dont like vegetables, etc. It is important that parents inject fruits, vegetables, proteins (etc) into the child’s diet. If the kid is used to eat that from early age she will continue to do it as she grows. Of course government should keep the campains, and programs and keep talking and educating about it but if we dont learn how to do it right at home its difficult to learn latter. Keep posting, congrats on the site 🙂 kisses

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  2. Thank you, Karima for sharing your opinion and that post.

    I totally agree with you that government should be more involved with educating and informing society about the risk and consequences of living unhealthily. (if you don’t mind I want to focus here more on children)
    In my opinion, if parents were more educated around this area the childhood obesity would definitely decrease.
    Additionally, I believe in that, if parents just did their job properly, we wouldn’t have a childhood obesity epidemic.

    Why do I think like that? From my point of view, if you’re a parent, the nutritional needs of your baby or toddler are obviously a priority. Also, in my opinion, kids are our little reflections so it’s obvious that we love and take care of them but also we should be aware that not only our love and care affect on them but bad habits too.

    Additionally, research shows that the food a child eats in its early years can influence its dietary habits later in life, and so it’s important to instil good habits and a healthy relationship with food from an early age.

    I personally, perceive obesity as a condition caused by freely chosen behaviour and that maintained people can simply cure themselves by eating less and exercising more.
    In my opinion, if everyone all over the world took an individual and personal responsibility for what they are serving on plates, we wouldn’t have to spend billion of pounds dealing with a problem. Something like; if you want to change to happen – start with yourself.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi “senseofmorality”, thank you for your comment and the facts. That is a very good perspective on this problem. Child obesity has been a continuos problem around the world, however has become worse in the UK and USA. I do agree that is up to the parents to introduce their children to a healthy lifestyle, but sometimes (most of the cases) parents are not educated enough on this subject and that is when the government should intervene. I do agree that if everyone would act responsible in relation to food the billions of pounds spent fighting obesity wouldn’t be necessary.

      Thank you,

      Karima

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  3. I believe that there is no such thing as “choice”. People are very influenced by the media and if you grow up in an environment where society says that “is is okay to eat fast food” it will be hard to change that way of thinking. The government is responsible for the environment and lifestyle of dwellers, so I strongly believe that they must act in that matter. It’s not okay to be obese, it is not okay to eat fast food, they should stop letting people promote this kind of BS.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for you comment, I really appreciate. That is a very fair point, society already thinks in a certain way and it is difficult to change, so the government would be the best sector to change that.

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  4. Really great read!
    Obesity is one of those things because it’s so common it’s often overlooked and not seen as a pressing issues when in fact it’s really dangerous. And is definitely and area the government needs to get involved in more actively but educating the country as a whole.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I agree that it must be a challenge for the government to intervene on individuals eating choices, but there’s many other ways for it to take action, if we think about it, since an early age we are highly influenced by everything around us, and it’s from there that we have to create good and healthy habits… the governments could reinforce those healthy habits by being more strict on school foods… It’s all a matter of educating!

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