The American Medical Association (AMA) will join the World Health Organization (WHO) in identifying obesity as a disease. In advance the vote, the AMA’s Council on Science and Public Health said that the new distinction might result in larger investments by federal government and the private entities to develop and reimburse obesity treatments.”
The number of obese individuals is growing continuously. Obesity rates have doubled among adults in the last twenty years and tripled among children in a single generation. According to the most recent statistics, 66% of American adults are overweight or obese, with 1 in 3 adults meeting the criteria for obesity.
Obesity has been associated with many common diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, chronic joint pain. There is no single cause for obesity. Medical conditions, medications and treatments can also result in obesity. Prevalence of obesity is found to be more common among those of lower socioeconomic status, and among certain minority populations.
Treatment of obesity is very challenging. Most diet plans are not effective and lack long-term success. Countless weight loss drugs have been removed from the market because of their substantial adverse effects.
Bariatric or weight loss surgery has shown some success in management of obesity in the past years, and the number of individuals undertaking this variety of surgery have increased almost 50% from 2000 to 2005.
Based on research studies, obesity associated health expenses were estimated to be $147 billion in 2008.
In middle-age men, treatment of common obesity-linked conditions stroke, coronary heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and high blood cholesterol levels resulted in roughly $9,000 to $17,000 higher costs compared to normal-weight adults.
Youth who are overweight or obese have noticeably higher odds of remaining overweight or obese into adulthood.
Worldwide, almost 43 million children under age 5 were overweight or obese in 2010, a 60 percent increase since 1990.
I would like to suggest reading the following great article written by Dr. Daneschvar, an expert in disease prevention. Banning Sodas in NYC, Oversimplifying Obesity Management
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