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There is an alarming increase in the cases of overweight and obesity across the ages in the United States. My research studies focused on the obesity among the youths of the Clark County, Vancouver, WA, which has recorded high prevalence rates of obesity and become a great challenge to the public health.
The purpose of this research study is to tackle this challenge through careful investigation of obesity in order to propose effective strategies that would combat and reverse the high incidence rate of obesity among the youths. Due to the difficulties experienced during the research survey, I did not manage to produce my own statistics, so my findings are based on credible statistics from the experts.
According to statistical records of the year 2004-2006, about 10% of the County Clark youths are obese as compared to the 2010 goal of 5% by Health People. The obesity among students shows that male students have obesity level 14% while female students have obesity level of 6%. On the other hand, students whose mothers have education level above high school showed a lower obese level of 8% while students whose mothers have education level below high school showed a higher obese level of 12%.
The percentage of youths who are obese or at risk of obesity is about 25% and this again depends on the gender and socioeconomic factors of students. The major factors contributing to the rise in obesity cases are; inadequate dietary intake of fruits and vegetables, high intake of the refined food and soft drinks and inadequate physical exercises.
Obesity among youths is not only a health issue but also a social issue. Since obese youths are prone to develop other diseases like diabetes type II, heart disease and hypertension and by extension affect their school performances, obesity requires immediate attention. To address the problem of obesity and its associated consequences among the youths of the Clark County, there are several recommendations.
In terms of nutrition, schools should provide nutritious meals to the students and restrict the access of refined food and soft drinks by the students. The youths should be advised to increase their dietary intakes of the fresh vegetables and fruits and on how to choose nutritious foodstuffs by reading on the labels. The schools also need to provide physical education and diversify the physical activities that students can access within and outside the school.
The current interventions to control obesity are very limited in that the students at their school are not provided nutritious meals and since the parents have realized this, the students are given extra money to supplement their diets.
Moreover, there are not restrictions to the access of foodstuffs students buy, thus the students have free access to the refined food and the soft drinks, which greatly contribute to their obesity. Overall, the youths of Clark County consume more of refined food and soft drinks as compared to the vegetables and fruits that are important in their health.
Basing on the statistical figures, the rate of increase in the obesity cases among youths is quite alarming and requires immediate intervention. The shift in the eating habits into refined food and soft drinks coupled with the inadequate physical exercises has led to the increase in the cases of the obesity among the youths of the Clark County. To combat obesity, change in eating lifestyle and enhanced physical exercises among youths is highly necessary to prevent the dire consequences associated with obesity.