Sample Healthcare Paper on Obesity in the United States

Obesity in the United States


The current state of obesity in the world is worrying, with major trends also noted in the United States. This has led to an increase in activities to mitigate the widespread in some states. Obesity is a disease, which affects many people in the society and every person has the ability to prevent it. This research will highlight the causes and solutions of obesity in the state of New York.

The research will also highlight the causes and effects of obesity among New Yorkers by giving an in-depth description of various elements. The research will indicate the approaches that can be implemented by state authorities and community-based agencies to curb and reduce the disease spread. The research will describe the facts based on scientific and research evidence, which will highlight the causes of obesity, and solutions which when implemented will bring changes towards eradicating obesity in New York.

Background Information

Obesity continues to ravage communities, societies, states, and countries. Obesity has a connection to lifestyle elements that people indulge in. In the United States, the disease affects the majority of states, with New York being inclusive. Obesity has gained its root in the state of New York, affecting both children and adults, and if not managed will continue to be an issue. The disease will continue affecting people from all cultures and races (Lim & Tiffany, 2015), including children with childhood obesity among school going children also becoming an epidemic.

The State of New York has obesity rates of about 20% with this widely seen among all people, including schoolchildren and adults (Thorpe et al, 2004). The disease affects the population due to poor eating habits, with the consumption of food and beverages containing high amount of sugars being the resultant factor.


Obesity as an epidemic in New York is a major worrying issue with some of the causes established to be foods that are consumed by the populations in the State. The State’s division of nutrition indicates that the diet of most citizens is the main cause, with a high number of adults consuming unhealthy foods containing excess sugars and other fats. The high consumption of foods and beverages containing high amounts of sugar above the normal accepted levels by state and federal agencies (Parikh et al, 2010), continue to increase sugar and fat levels, thereby increasing the obesity rates among school children and the other populations.

The state of New York is a home to one of the most vibrant fast food industries. The food industry generates billions of dollars yearly due to a high number of consumers of the products, with school children and adults being the buyers. These products, majorly fast foods, will continue to increase the body mass index among New Yorkers (Dumanovsky, 2010). The fast foods are a result of the chain of restaurants across the state offering various menus consisting of unhealthy foods. The foods offered contain high-calorie elements that are the major sources of excess fats and sugar. It is also established that the populations of adults and children consume more calories than on the days that they do not eat the fast foods. The high amount of calories is eaten outside the home environment in fast food restaurants that would have reduced the calorie intake if the same would have been prepared in their homes.

Apart from this, beverages and drinks that are also consumed play an important role in increasing obesity. This is due to the high amounts of sugar contained in them, with the major cause being the increased intake of soft drinks that increase body weight and calories. The restaurants also sell refined foods and sweetened beverages, such as fruit juices. These drinks tend to appeal more to the people hence the need for more, resulting in an addiction thereby having an impact on the consumer due to the high amounts of sugar in such drinks.

The majority of the populations also have poor eating habits and dietary patterns, which involve eating large proportions of meals at irregular times. Research demonstrates that meal frequency and snacking attributes also have an impact on body weight among New Yorkers. This is majorly highlighted in instances where some of the people skip certain meals, while consuming higher amounts of unbalanced diets at improper times. The larger proportion of food eaten is not put into use by the body, but rather the excess is accumulated resulting in obesity.

While dietary elements constitute the major causes of obesity in the state, it is also established that lack of physical activity and exercise increases the rates of the disease. A larger population of children and adults lack physical exercise in their day to day lives, which results in an over-accumulation of fats and sugar that may have been put into use through exercise and participation in school-based activities, such as sports. The combinations of the above cause obesity among New Yorkers. However, there are solutions that can be implemented to mitigate the causes of the disease.

Past Solutions and Failures

The solution to solve obesity in New York lies in institutional effectiveness in terms of program implementation to reduce the disease. The state has in the past failed to provide an elaborate mechanism to control the measure of the production of such unhealthy properties contained in food and beverages sold to the public. This is because the ingredients supplied by manufactures also contain the elements hence controlling its use at the retail stage would have minimal impacts. This is largely contributed by the disconnect between the federal government and other state-based agencies tasked with legal and policymaking initiatives (Reeve et al, 2015), as such would be implemented by legislative rulings, such as the Affordable Care Act.

The New York state has failed in its institutional reforms mandate. This would have been used to implement policies and structural programs that would have involved various stakeholders to prevent the spread of disease.


Consumer awareness

Information is power and is able to liberate. Consumers need exposure to information regarding the causes of consuming foods high in sugar and fat. Consumer awareness both by the producers of the food products and state agencies can have a long lasting impact. This can happen through billboards and mass media to educate the public on the effects of consuming foods high in sugar and calorie.

Restaurants selling such foodstuffs can be used to educate their customers by posting calorie information on their products, and advising its consumers to consume acceptable amounts of sugar, which will reduce obesity in the long run. Calorie labeling on foodstuffs educates consumers on the amount of calorie that they may consume at a given time, hence reducing the amount of fat deposits in their bodies, which is the major obesity causing element.

The New York state agencies and department of health can also educate the public by engaging agents to distribute fliers near such restaurants to have an impact on the consumers, regarding high calorie and fast food intake. In addition to this, there can be massive anti-obesity campaign efforts by state health agencies to educate the public on healthy diets to reduce obesity rates. This can be conducted in the community by community-based agencies to educate the public on the health effects of consuming unhealthy diets.

State agencies can also play a key role in the reduction of obesity by implementing state-based regulations and compliance programs that can reduce production of unhealthy foods, such as fast foods. These regulations can be used to control the amount of sugar contained in sweetened beverage products and drinks by enforcing certain policies, such as the calorie labeling policy, which can be used as a guide by consumers to make an informed decision when purchasing such foods and drinks.

Schools and other public institutions can also be used to structure programs in order to address the issue of obesity. For instance, this can happen in schools where the city and state based institutions, through the department of education, can be used to promote health through providing good food of high nutritional value (Perlman, 2012), in addition to which they can also promote a healthy school environment aimed at educating students on healthy lifestyles (Freudenberg et al, 2013). Obesity can also be reduced through offering supplemental food programs in New York schools (Farley & Dowell, 2014), a strategy to reduce the consumption of poor dietary foods in private schools and institutions. This will reduce the menace that would affect the school going children, especially in reducing meals with high amounts of calorie (Wye et al, 2013).

The built environment should also be used to solve the issue of obesity by supporting healthy lifestyles and behaviors that can encourage physical activity among the people (Rube, 2014). Programs, such as the roadway improvement program concerned with the built environment can be used to design, build, and improve roads as a means of combating obesity (Muenning et al, 2014). This strategy would be used to reduce the over use of automobiles, elevators, and escalators that will promote physical activities, such as walking, bicycling, and active engagement in sports during leisure.

There is sufficient research that substantiates that the level of participation in physical activities can reduce obesity, hence constant involvement in such acts and improvement of infrastructure can foster a healthy environment to mitigate the spread of obesity.

Future Solutions

The future solutions would involve institutional reforms as a guiding principle in the disease prevention. The state should consider implementing state-based innovative obesity reduction policies (Reeve et al, 2015). These solutions through reforms would be used to encourage various stakeholders in the food industry towards lowering sugar and fat level in exchange for grants and tax reductions. This strategy would attract massive interests among stakeholders due to the nature of businesses towards maximizing their economy. A reduction in tax to companies that comply with the state policy on sugar and fat reduction would help reduce obesity in the future, as state-wide companies would target tax savings in exchange to complying with the policy.

Apart from implementing institutional structures, the state of New York should also foster strong community outreach programs, partnerships programs, collaborations, and initiatives to reduce obesity within the community level. This strategy would work because every level of the population would be attended to by major and sub-contracted private entities of state and federal agencies to combat the disease. State-based and community partnership programs and initiatives would work by establishing a strong force to combat obesity both at the state and community levels.

These programs should, however, be implemented in a structured way to maximize the results. The implementation plan should focus the severely affected populations, starting with the state level, downwards to the community, and a monitoring process should also be implemented to track and monitor the progress towards the prevention to achieve the best results.


Obesity in New York will continue to affect the population if not well managed. The current research indicates that most of the obese population includes children and the aged population due to their lifestyle factors and dietary elements that are common. The research also highlights that lack of education and awareness of prevention techniques also hinders the effectiveness of obesity prevention, with the larger population being affected due to lack of information. The research also highlights the past failures, solutions, and future solutions, which if implemented may reduce the menace. Reducing the rates of obesity in New York involves a two-way approach, which should be taken into consideration when implementing the programs.


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