Pudgy Humanity’s Scary Side Effect
Pudgy Humanity’s Scary Side Effect, A study determines the collective extra weight that the human race is carrying around. Forty years ago, obesity was a small concern — if one at all — to governments, health care professionals and individuals. Today, obesity rates have skyrocketed around the globe and present one of the single biggest challenges, both nutritionally and economically, in recent history.
Nearly 14 percent of women in the world are considered obese, up from 7.9 percent in 1980. Among men, 10 percent are obese, up from 5 percent in 1980. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) predicts the obesity rate will jump from 36 percent in 2012 to 42 percent by 2030. Around the world, 10 percent of adults are obese, and an estimated 3 million deaths worldwide are caused every year by obesity-related illnesses. In the U.S., 70 percent of adults and 17 percent of teens and children are either overweight or obese.
One health study determined that humanity is 17 million tons (15 million metric tons) overweight. Exactly how big is that? Imagine an extra 242 million people of average body mass living on the planet.
The cost of treating obesity-related illnesses like heart disease and diabetes in the U.S. equals $147 billion every year — that’s almost one-fifth of the country’s total health expenditures. The CDC defines adult obesity as having a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher. The CDC considers adults with a BMI of 18.5 to 24.9 a “healthy weight.”
Marion Nestle, a professor of nutrition, food studies and public policy at New York University, and one of the leading nutritional experts in the nation, has been trying to change how people eat for years. She’s written many books on the food industry, detailing how government policy has become intertwined with food choice and obesity. One of the arguments she makes in her latest book, “Why Calories Count,” focuses on the impact Wall Street has made on food companies and ultimately what people consume. Obesity rates started to rise in the 1980s, she says in the accompanying video, largely because of demands Wall Street placed on food makers.