Discuss 3 key causes of obesity in UK adolescents and describe the possible long term health effects of obesity in this population group
Obesity is the major dietary health problem in many countries. Obesity in the U.K is fairly common among teenagers. In the U.K, over 25% of the population are obese. The prevalence of obesity depends upon a number of factors including age, diet, ethnic etc. Majority of people linked obesity to the weight of a person but overweight is another term which is define as an excess of body weight that contains bone, fat, muscle and water, while the term obesity particularly refer to excessive amount of fat in the body. Some people, for instance, athletes and bodybuilders with a lot of muscle, without being abese can be overweight. Being obese or underweight refers to excessive accumulation of fat in the body which may result in disease. According to the National health survice survey, Obesity in males rising from 13-24% while in females rising from 16-24% from 1993 to 2006. Obesity results from abnormal dietary patterns- a disproportion between energy intake and expenditure. Obesity is positively associated with time spent watching television and in an inverse manner with physical activity. Psychological factors may also play a role, people with Bulimia Nervosa (Eating disorder) may secretly binge- eating great quantity of food- and then purge.Obesity is identified by the body mass index (BMI) which is a simple calculation which classifies a person according to a set score. According to World Health Organisation (WHO), a body mass index greater than or equal to 25 is classified as overweight where as an index of greater than or equal to 30 is classified as obese. Since 1980, obesity rate worldwide has doubled. 39% of adults of 18 years and over were known to be overweight last year while 13% of them were obese (WHO). Two studies were performed regarding the obesity issue in the past that support a genetic method of inheritance and suggesting a polygenic disorder. Occassionally, some causal factors can be discovered such as insulinoma, hypothyroidism etc. Because of chronic diseases, such as heart diseases, stroke, cancer etc Obese patients have about a three fold increase in deaths. Obese men are more predilected to cancer of colon than non-obese men, whereas, Obese women are more predilected to cancer of gall bladder than non-obese women. Drug with some success include: beta-blockers, tricyclic antidepressanta and sodium valproate.
COMPLICATIONS OF OBESITY:
Some of the health risks of obesity are,
– Coronary heart disease
– Metabolic syndrome
– Sleep apnoea
– Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis
– High blood pressure
– Type 2 diabetes
Obese children mature earlier than non-obese children. Obesity reduces life expectancy by 13 years amongst smokers. The major cause of death among obese people is Coronary heart disease.
Obesity can be determined by using the body mass index.
– Normal 18.5-25
– Overweight 25-30
– Obese >30
The three main factors are,
– Imbalance between energy intake and expenditure.
One of the main causes of obesity is related to the imbalance between calories-in and calories-out. The World health organization discovered that a limitation of physical activity with over consumption of foods with high levels of saturated fats increased the rate of obesity over three fold since 1980 in the U.K.
Although a healthy diet and exercise is widely important, further research into the forms of exercise and the diet that is effective in this issue is needed.
Moreover, majority of people do not change the lifestyle that they need, to control their obesity and therefore they need to follow clinician interventions that can influence the maintenance of their physical activity and healthy eating.
The surrounding that an individual acquire is also important. For instance, Asians have a greater amount of body fat that contributes to increased risk of type 2 diabetes and coronary heart disease. This underestimation amongst specific population needs further investigation, so that the main cause can be identified in that population.
LONG TERM INFLUENCE OF OBESITY IN ADOLESCENCE:
Obesity is the most common nutritional disease among children as well as adolescents. Obesity associated disorders occur more commonly in adults. Several studies have clearly shown that young aged adults are more prone to obesity. Overweight people are least likely to be friends with others. Obesity can be associated with a veriety of negative features like laziness, sloppiness etc. One possible consequence of this perception is that obese people may choose those people as friends who are less judgemental about their weight and are more eager to be with the overweight friend.
Other than the negative association of obesity, these people do not have a low self-steem, but can develop a negative self-image that persist into adulthood.Prevalence of behavioural difficulties have been seen among people who are gaining weight rapidly.
The psychological problems seen in children with obesity have correlation with socioeconomic status rather than child’s obesity. According to the National Longitudinal survey of Youth, women who were obese in early adulthood, the family income and the proportion of marriage is significantly low as compared to those women who were not obese at the same ages. Moreover, the poverty rates were higher. No such association were discover for men. Eating disorders such as Bulimia Nervosa, is more common in overweight women and significantly lower the response to treatment.
In order to estimate body fat, we can measure the thickness of subcutaneous layer of fat in various parts of the body by using skin calipers. The standard way of measuring obesity and overweight is Body Mass Index (BMI) comprises a formula based on weight and height. Bariatric medicine are the medicines that gain huge success for obese patients. Beacause body fat measurement is a difficult task, health care professionals usually rely on weight for height tables.
Weight loss is strictly recommended by the professionals if there are two or more of the following:
– Family history of chronic diseases.
– Disorders excisting previously like hypertension, hyperglycaemia etc
– Apple shaped body.
The treatment depends upon health condition, grade of obesity and determination to lose weight. Dietary changes should also be advised. The treatment may comprises of exercise, diet, behavioural modification and drugs that help to lose weight.
For severe Obesity, surgery may also be recommended, that aims at:
– Reducing tummy size.
Transoral and vertical banded gastroplasty.
– Mixed techniques
Obesity has widely increased across the world. Obesity in adolescence is not a cosmetic issue, but has major impacts on health that are not cherish by patients, their families or health care professionals. Several of the morbidities require urgent therapy. There are many complications associated with obesity include eating disorders, psychosocial difficulties etc. Most of the side effects of obesity are more common in adults but rare in children.
References: key causes of obesity in UK adolescents and describe the possible long term health effects of obesity
Davidson, S. and Innes, J. (2009) Davidson’s Essentials Of Medicine. Edinburgh: Elsevier/Churchill Livingstone
Dietz, W. (1998) ‘Health Consequences Of Obesity In Youth: Childhood Predictors Of Adult Disease’.Pediatrics [online] 101 (Supplement 2), 518-525. available from <http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/101/supplement_2/518.full> [14 November 2015]
Reilly, J. (2006) ‘Obesity In Childhood And Adolescence: Evidence Based Clinical And Public Health Perspectives’. Postgraduate Medical Journal 82 (969), 429-437
Scully, C. and Cawson, R. (2005) Medical Problems In Dentistry. Edinburgh: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone
Who.int, (2015) WHO | Obesity And Overweight [online] available from <http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs311/en/> [14 November 2015]