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Obesity Consequences for Youth and Adults Research Paper


Obesity is one of the biggest health problems in the world today. The biggest worry is the fact that this problem mainly affects children and teenagers while parents are not aware of its occurrence. There is a general misconception that obesity is signified by a visible weight gain. While this may be true, some people may not display such symptoms, but they may be suffering from weight gain hence obesity. This research seeks to identify the consequences of obesity and its effects on victims, both young and adults.

Defining obesity

Obesity is simply defined as the excess accumulation of body fats in an individual. These fats accumulate and are deposited in the body due to lack of physical activities that help in breaking them down. There are different measuring techniques that are used to determine whether an individual is obese or healthy. In fact, obese people are considering being unhealthy, even if they are not as big as the normal stereotype of obese people. Techniques used to measure obesity include underwater weighing or densitometry, multi-frequency bioelectrical impedance analysis, and magnetic resonance imaging (Flegal et al. 79).

These techniques are used in the research field (Flegal et al. 79). However, the most commonly used technology in a clinical setting is the body mass index. The method includes calculation of the body weight divided by the height of an individual. However, this method is not very accurate, but it gives an indication of the percentage of the risk of an individual being obese. With the body mass index technique, an adult is considered to be obese when their measure is above 30 units while above 25 units are considered to signify that an individual is overweight (Flegal et al. 80).

Prevalence of obesity globally

Currently, the reported cases of obesity across the age groups have been at an alarming increase. This shows that more people are increasingly becoming obese, both young and adults. For instance, in the UK the prevalence of obesity cases among women has increased by 21% and 17% among men (). Luckily, the percentage recorded for children is lower compared to the adults’ rate.

For instance, the prevalence among 4 to 11 year olds is 9-16% (Ogden et al. 809). Evidence from collected data in most researches shows that girls are more prone to obesity than the boys. The age difference is also a factor to consider. The prevalence of obesity increases as the children age progresses. Teen in adolescence is more prone to obesity compared to all other young age groups. It has also been noted through research evidence that childhood obesity, in most cases, is carried forth to adulthood. This has been seen in many children who are obese, becoming adults and yet having the same problem in their adulthood.

However, this is not the general assumption for all cases. Nonetheless, 70% of obese adolescents are more likely to become obese adults (Ogden et al. 809). However, for children, this is different. Most children go through a period of young fat accumulation which fades away soon after they grow older due to the rampant childhood activities.

Causes of obesity

There are different causes of obesity in both adults and children alike. Some of these causes are medical, while others are behavioral causes. Medical causes are not very common but they still do exist. The medical causes of obesity are based on the passing on obese genetic makeup from parents to their young ones. Examples of these obese causes include the Prader-Willi Syndrome or the Leptin Deficiency (). In addition, medical obesity can be as an effect of drug abuse or even legal medical process.

For example, chemotherapy and some of the birth control pills have been known to cause users to accumulate fat deposits in their bodies and hence increase their body weight over a period of time. Other effects include growth hormone deficiency.

Behavioral causes

Most cases of obesity are as a result of behavioral effects. Evidently, the modern teenagers are less interested in the conventional real foods. This problem is not only prevalent among the youth and teenagers but also among adults. With the current average intake of energy drinks and fast foods, the prevalence of obesity has been at its highest rate. Most people are become less concerned about their eating habits as they prefer the quick fixes and alternatives of real meals. This is evident considering the rising number of fast food joints and their popularity.

Apart from simply having very poor eating habits, young people and adults alike have resulted to fast foods which are high in their fat and calorie contents. While this presents the genesis of the problem, the real issue arises when very high intake of fat is taken in and nothing is done to utilize that energy (Onyike et al. 1141). In the long run, the accumulation of body fats increase the body weights hence the occurrence of obesity. Most people are taking a lot of fatty foods and high energy drinks. However, the large volume of fats and energy taken is not equally balanced by physical activities to release or utilize the energy taken in.

This creates a tragic opportunity for the body to absorb the fats and through a natural biological process it stores the fats underneath the skin. This is what causes individuals suffering from obesity to display increased body size. However, diet cannot be blamed as the sole cause of the growing number of obesity cases. Research has shown that lack of the ability to control food intake is the greatest cause of obesity among children and adults (Ruxton 47).

Energy intake is not the main problem and the main cause weight gain. The real problem arises when individuals cannot find a balance between energy intake and energy expenditure. In the current social settings, the opportunities for individuals to utilize the energy taken in have been compromised.

In schools for instance, playing grounds are being replaced by state of the art libraries and computer rooms. Children are no longer playing outside running up and down as it used to be in the olden days. Today things are different with the video games that keep them locked inside their homes for hours. The lack of physical exercises has dreadful implications on the children’s health.

Negative effects of obesity

The reason why obesity is an important issue that needs to be addressed as soon as possible is due to the implications it has on its victims. The occurrence of obesity among young school going children is one of the most dreadful medical problem. Children suffering from obesity according to research have proven to have self esteem issues in their adulthood. Majority of these children grow in an atmosphere where they feel rejected and they also feel like they are less important. Fat children are ridiculed in class and they also suffer humiliation due to their inability to perform most of the common simple activities.

For instance, obese children cannot run as fast as the rest of their peers. This causes them to be bullied and teased in school and the psychological trauma that may accumulate at this age may never be recovered even at a later age. The psychological effects occurring in obese children at an early age are drastic and most of these effects may last even to adulthood. With a low self-esteem that has developed over that long period of time, such adults may never recover.

As a result it reduces their ability to rich their full potential since they have grown knowing that they are not competent enough. Allowing this feeling to develop in the upcoming generation would be tragic to the nation and the world at large.

The country needs productive people full of energy and creativity. Obese victims are known to have a relaxed mind and they are less creative. The lack of innovative skills among the population may be tragic to the continuity of developments in the current society. Bringing up young adults who are less productive is tragic for the world. Over weight body mass is not only a psychological issue, but also a health risk. Obese victims are more prone to cardiovascular disease compared to those who are physically fit.

Due to the increased body mass, the heart struggles to pump blood to the different parts of the body. This may have different health implications including affecting efficient supply of oxygen to the brain hence affecting rain growth. This is a very negative and dreadful implication that can causes drastic implications among the population.

Problem justification

Fighting the prevalence f obesity is a matter of great concern and it should be taken very seriously by both the government and individuals. The world today does not need redundant people who cannot participate in the development of the economy (Flegal et al. 493). In addition, the health implications that have been discussed above are more than enough to influence the authorities to step up their efforts in fighting this problem. Eradication of obesity among the world population will yield great success since it will greatly improve the quality of life and also increase life expectancy.

A healthy nation is a great achievement and this is what the government should focus on when approaching this problem. To have a large number of adults suffering from psychological issues is a great loss to both the economy and the families of such individuals. In additions, it is also unfair to allow children to grow and experience the hostile environments and ridicule in school. Children deserve a better lifestyle and better experiences during their tender age in order for them to develop into great and mature adults in the future. It is important to shape our children’s habits at an early age to prevent them from the harsh effects and implications of obesity.


The negative implications of obesity are too drastic to allow young children to go through. In addition, obese adults are mostly very unproductive even in the work place. Having a large number of such individuals might be very disastrous for the economy.

Works Cited

Flegal, K. M., et al. “Prevalence and trends in obesity among US adults, 2007-2010.” JAMA 309.1 (2012): 71-82. Print.

Flegal, Katherine M., et al. “Prevalence of obesity and trends in the distribution of body mass index among US adults, 1999-2010.” Jama 307.5 (2012): 491-497. Print.

Go, A. S., D. Mozaffarian, and V. L. Roger. “Sugar-sweetened beverages initiatives can help fight childhood obesity.” Circulation 127.1 (2013): 6-245. Print.

Ogden, Cynthia L., et al. “Prevalence of childhood and adult obesity in the United States, 2011-2012.” Jama 311.8 (2014): 806-814. Print.

Onyike, et al. “Is Obesity Associated with Major Depression? Results from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.” American Journal of Epidemiology 159. 12 (2003): 1139-47. Print.

Ruxton, C. “Obesity in children.” Nursing standard 18.20 (2004): 47-52. Print.

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