There is nothing better than being able to eat anything you want; all your favorite food in as much as your stomach allows it. However, there is nothing worse than feeling so bloated and being so heavy that you can no longer bend to touch your toes- let alone see them. This very alarming medical condition is called Obesity. Defined as the accumulation of excess body fat to the extent of causing negative effects on your health, Obesity is one of the leading medical conditions in our world today. Aside from lowering life expectancy, obesity increases the likelihood of contracting other diseases such as heart diseases, osteoarthritis, some types of diabetes and cancer, and obstructive sleep apnea. To learn more about the history behind the medical condition, here are 10 facts about obesity we put together just for you. Enjoy!
Fact 1: Obesity has become the leading cause of death worldwide, affecting not only adults but children as well, with numbers rising annually. Authorities now view it as the 21st century’s most alarming public health problem to date. In 2013, obesity had been declared as a disease by the American Medical Association, and has been traced in most parts of the Western world. America stigmatized as the Obesity Capital of the world.
Fact 2: Traveling back to 1990, if you were a little overweight back in the day, it wouldn’t be something society would be looking down upon. In fact, it would have been celebrated! Being on the heavy side meant that you were of high social status, and some parts of the world even celebrated obesity as a mark of true beauty and fertility.
Fact 3: According to a study conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, obesity grew at an alarming rate between the years 1980 till 2009, with Southeastern and Midwestern countries going from a 10% obesity rate to a an alarming 30%. According to the New York Times, 2010 marked the year with the highest rate of people diagnosed with obesity all throughout the world.
Fact 4: Throughout history the world has taken the steps in preventing the disease from spreading. In 2011, after the largest obesity boom known to man, schools and city districts implemented the practice of more physical activity and less calorie intake. The facilities would ban soft drinks and junk food from being sold in the cafeteria, while some districts and cities such as San Francisco and Baldwin Park in California were successful in banning fast-food outlets from opening.
Fact 5: In 2011, some popular fast food restaurants in San Francisco were not allowed to include toys inside meals that were not approved by the Department of Health or did not meet the standards that need to be met by a growing child. If the meal was too fatty and lacked in any substantial protein or the decent amount of carbohydrates, you weren’t allowed to get a toy along with it.
Fact 6: During the years 1957 up to 1997, the amount of meat found in hamburgers grew significantly. The beef patties which were originally 1 ounce became 6 ounces in the span of 40 years, which played a large part in contributing towards the rising percentage of obesity.
Fact 7: 1970 was the year research in the field of obesity truly began to blossom in Europe. Headed by James and John Waterlow from the Depart of Health and the UK Medical Research Council, the two were able to prepare an analysis for the disease. They were also successful in establishing a fund used for medical research and the like.
Fact 8: The very first International Congress for Obesity (ICO) was held on October 1974. The event was held at the Royal College of Physicians in London and over 500 attendees from 30 countries were all in attendance.
Fact 9: Reports indicated that over 83% of those who are overweight or who are suffering from obesity suffer from a mental illness as well. Because a person suffering from a mental disorder is more than likely to become socially isolated, physically inactive, and live a sedentary lifestyle, obesity is highly possible and the two go hand in hand.
Fact 10: In 2011, more than 40 million children who were under the age of five were overweight. 1.4 billion Adults were found suffering from obesity, with 200 million men and 300 million women suffering from the disease.