Obesity In America Essay

2340 words - 9 pages

The biggest question in our society lately has been the question of what causes obesity especially among that poor and minorities: is it genetics? Or maybe the environment you live in? According to Paul Kocken, an expert in health promotion, obesity in minority and social disadvantage groups may be an issue because of the lack of resources available. While on the other hand, according to pediatric nurse specialist Janice Long, race/ethnicity in terms of genetics may be attributed to higher risks of obesity in children. Environment and genetics are both reliable options when it comes to a blame for obesity however one of these options may have a stronger pull over the other.
Obesity is becoming a very large epidemic throughout America and has reached 90.5 million people (HMAT). While it used to be something that people just “were” it is now described as common “condition” in which people have more body fat then necessary and over 2/3 of people are considered to be obese (Medicine Net).
Many diseases are associated with obesity and the epidemic is growing every year and becoming more harmful to America’s health. With adults gaining more and more weight yearly children are starting to follow in their paths becoming obese at an extremely young age with over 12 million children being overweight (HMAT).
Many people argue that the environment one lives in is a very large reason that obesity is an issue. An environment is considered to be how and where you grow up. One’s environment makes up the lifestyle that they live and the way that they do things in their life. When different lifestyles are observed, we can clearly see how people’s lives are affected by the situations that they are put in and also by how they live. Major environmental changes within the past few years have led to obesity because of “lifestyle choices such as what a person’s food consumption is like and his or her level of physical exertion” (ygoy).
Often times most people that are low income cannot afford healthy food. According to a study reported by Reuters, trying to eat healthier can cause a 10% increase to your monthly food bill. The average American spends 13% of their monthly income on food (Miller) with the lower income families spending around $127 a week, while the upper class families spend almost $60 more than that (Mendes). Lower income families may also get governmental help with food which allows the families to buy things like breads, pastas, and other high calorie foods. While governmental assistance does allow for poorer families to receive help, people on these programs only get around $142 per month according to the SNAP program in Massachusetts (Mass Resources).
In terms of cooking it is much easier for a parent with a full time job to run to the local fast food restaurant as opposed to cooking a meal at home. According to Crave Time News letter it takes on average 40-50 minutes a day to prepare dinner while the average microwave dinner only...

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