It’s Only Getting Worse — Obesity in America

First Reading

Website Title: Obesity in America: It’s Getting Worse 
Article Title: Clinical Diabetes
Date Accessed: November 17, 2014

Jennifer B. Marks, the author, received her medical degree and completed a residency in Internal Medicine and a fellowship in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at the University of Miami School of Medicine. She has focused her efforts on Diabetes and its prevention.

Dr. Marks has a very successful resume.  She received her MD, and earned a BS in Nursing from the University of Southern Maine. In addition, she was a past president of the American Diabetes Association (ADA) South Coastal Region and is the immediate past Editor-in Chief of Clinical Diabetes, an ADA publication.
Currently Dr. Marks is working on many projects; she is an investigator in the NIH-funded multi-center “Diabetes TrialNet”, a consortium of researchers, as well as serving as the President of the Miami Dade Board of Directors of the ADA.   Even with her busy schedule she finds the time to serve on the editorial boards of numerous diabetes-related journals and as a reviewer for several general medical journals. A recent success for Dr. Marks was being invited to speak at a variety of national and international meetings on diabetes and obesity.

The purpose of Dr. Marks’ article is to educate the readers about the rapidly growing obesity problem; even though there is so much evidence showing the benefits to having a healthy lifestyle.
The likely audience for this article consists of:
1.People who suffer from obesity and want to become informed so they can make a life style change.
2.People like Dr.Marks who devoted their occupation to conquering illnesses brought on due to obesity.
3.Personal trainers who devote their occupation to better people and their health.
4.Nutritionists who also devote their job to bettering people and their health.
5.The general public, because they should be informed about basic health facts that could also affect their health and overall wellness

First Reading Summary

Despite the media’s efforts and educational campaigns about the benefits of healthier diets and increased physical activity, obesity in the United States has more than doubled over the past four decades.
Our genetic makeup has been inherited from our ancestors, who were hunters and gatherers.   Their diets consisted of low fats, meats and grains. During times of feast, their bodies were designed to store nutrients to be used as fuel to survive periods of famine. As descendants of these survivors we share this ability to store fat when food is in overabundance. Today, however, famine in the United States is few and far between, so this added fat is not used up and continues to accumulate through the years.
There is an abundant amount of evidence that proves the benefits of maintaining a healthy weight and a physically active lifestyle; but Americans still continue to eat larger portion sizes than needed and remain less physically active than we should—that is our problem. Another problem is that there are fewer opportunities to exercise with the lack of bike paths, sidewalks, or easily accessible stairways in many places.  It is also sad that people do not just eat for hunger but eat for social, cultural, and emotional reasons. Thankfully, we have organizations like the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the North American Association for the Study of Obesity (NAASO) who are mounting increased educational efforts to fight the growing epidemic of obesity in this country.
We can also be thankful for the amount of knowledge that is rapidly accumulating in the field of weight management.  This knowledge will undoubtedly lead to safe and effective interventions helping us deal more effectively with this obesity epidemic.

Another important message to take away from this article is that you should get away from talking about “diets” or “exercise”; but focus on making better food choices and increase your physical activity. Patients on diets feel deprived and don’t stick with them. Encourage patients to choose foods they like to eat within the context of varied, healthy choices; adherence will improve and so will success.

Second Reading

Website Title: Harvardgazette. N.p., n.d. Web.Willett
Article Title: The Whys of Rising Obesity
Date Accessed: November 17, 2014

Alvin Powell received his education at ALM, Harvard Extension School. Mr. Powell is a senior science writer at the Harvard University Gazette where he writes  about advances in science, medicine, and public health. Powell worked in daily journalism for more than a decade.  He also spent time as a freelance writer before going to Harvard and had a book published a book in 2008.

Powell’s article has a strong purpose. It points out the effect of food marketing on the eating habits of children as well as identifying other specific factors affecting the increase in obesity.

The likely audience for this article consists of:
1. People who suffer from obesity and want to become informed so they can make a life style change.
2. The general public, because they should be informed about basic health facts that could affect their health and overall wellness.
3. Parents, since 17 percent of children in America are obese and 5 percent are considered “severely obese.”
4. People who work in food marketing and want to make a change, want to direct children to the healthier options rather than the sugary ones.

Second Reading Summary

Walter Willet, who chairs the HSPH’s Nutrition Department and is a professor at HSPH explains how food marketing is an important factor in America’s obesity epidemic. The Marketing strategies used by various food companies influence the eating habits of children which causes them to develop poor eating habits. Panelists, on the forum webcast that included Willet, discussed the negative effects of these marketing strategies and how 17 percent of American children are obese and 5 percent of those children are considered “severely obese.”
While food industry marketing plays an important role in this obesity epidemic, panelists described several other important factors which have a significant impact on the increasing obesity rates.  One factor is that people no longer eat at a designated meal time; they are constantly snacking. Television also plays a role in fattening America causing “mindless eating”; as a result a person continuously eats and never feels full. What does not help this problem is that the increasing amount of time children spend interacting with screens on televisions, computers, cellphones, and other devices has risen dramatically, to more than seven hours a day.
Another huge factor as to why obesity is growing is that portion sizes have increased, and the consumption of sugary drinks has soared. People take in large amounts of carbohydrates (like Gatorade) because people think it is a healthy drink; however it is a form of highly processed starches.  These starches in the body behave in much the same way as sugar.
 Mozaffarian, an associate professor of epidemiology at HSPH and associate professor of medicine, explains that the focus on any particular component of food can be misleading.  Instead, he believes, the focus should be on eating whole foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, and grains.

Third Reading

Website Title: Stanford Health Care (SHC)
Article Title: Effects of Obesity
Date Accessed: November 16, 2014 

By Stanford Health Care

The purpose of this article is to list the negative health effects obesity has on a person’s body.  I ended with this article because it proves that obesity is not just about being “fat” but how it could lead to deadly health issues.

The likely audience for this article consists of:
1. People who suffer from obesity and want to be educated on what could happen to them if they do not change.
2. The general public, because they should be informed about basic health facts that could affect their health and overall wellness.
3. Doctors/nurses that will see people go through the horrible effects, if they do not make a lifestyle change.

Third Reading Summary

The U.S. Surgeon General has declared that overweight and obesity has reached epidemic proportions in the United States. Obesity is a serious, chronic disease that can negatively affect the health of any number of systems in your body. People who are overweight or obese have a much greater risk of developing everything from heart disease and Type 2 Diabetes to bone and joint disease.
Obesity has a far-ranging negative affect on health. Each year, obesity related conditions cost over 150 billion dollars to be spent in efforts to help people suffering, and obesity also caused over 300,000 premature deaths in the U.S.  There are many negative health affects associated with obesity, like high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and even coronary artery disease. Unfortunately that is not the end of it; obesity can also cause joint problems, most common in the knees and hips, sleep apnea and respiratory problems. Sadly the list of medical problems is even longer putting overweight people at a higher risk for a variety of cancers as well as Metabolic Syndrome, and psychosocial effects.

My Take

I chose obesity as my topic after listening to my health professor who gave the class a brief lesson on the growing numbers of obesity in America.   I was so shocked and wanted to learn more so I took this opportunity to do so. There are many factors to why obesity “has more than doubled over the past four decades.” Action needs to be taken, and I believe parents are the ones with the most control to make it happen.
Many factors causing the increased obesity rates include a decrease in physical activity, due to technology advancement, increased portion sizes, along with an increase in the amount of sugar that is consumed. Parents can control these factors.  Parents can limit the amount of time their children are allowed to watch TV or play video games.  They can also control portion size and the kind of food eaten.  As suggested by Mozaffarian in The Ways of Rising Obesity, they should provide whole foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains. This would create healthy eating habits that the child can take with them into adulthood, and possibility pass down to their children.
Another action that is needed is to have marketing teams, which surprisingly have a lot of power over of a child’s choice of food, focus their time and energy on directing kids to healthier options. According to a study done at Yale University, kids think snacks taste better when their favorite or popular cartoon characters are on the snack packages; so why not put those iconic faces on foods like carrots or granola.
This epidemic of increased obesity can be stopped; we just need adults, who have the power, to take action.

Work Cited:

Clinical Diabetes.” Obesity in America: It’s Getting Worse. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Nov. 2014.

The Whys of Rising Obesity.” Harvard Gazette. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Nov. 2014.

Effects of Obesity.Stanford Health Care (SHC) – (formerly Stanford Hospital & Clinics). N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Nov. 2014.




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8 Responses to Throwdown—mica

  1. davidbdale says:

    First Reading
    —FFG: a common quotation punctuation error.
    —FFG: banned 2nd person
    Second Reading
    —Marketing strategies . . . influences
    Third Reading
    —FFG: banned 2nd person
    —FFG: affect/effect
    —obesity related conditions . . . causes

    Other grammar errors detract from the overall quality of your work, mica, but don’t FFG.

    Your My Take is lacking any analysis of the sources you supposedly engaged with. I have tried many times in print and in lectures to indicate that this section is designed to have the several sources interact with one another, and with you. We don’t know which of the sources you thought most useful; which you thought might contradict one another; which if any seemed particularly manipulative; which did the job of convincing you of something new or surprising. You do add your own voice in the My Take, but you ignore the rest of the assignment.


  2. eagles1comp says:

    You use the banned second person… “you”


  3. mica1comp says:

    I corrected my work cited, and properly hyperlinked my sources. Also I tried to fix my grammar mistakes, so as of right now do I pass or fail in that department?


  4. davidbdale says:

    We’ve demonstrated repeatedly in class how to hyperlink your sources directly to the titles in your post, Mica. If you need another demo, let me know. Otherwise, link those titles. Also don’t forget to produce a legitimate Works Cited. There’s a model on this blog; we reviewed the process in class; and the link to EasyBib makes building citations from urls very easy.


  5. davidbdale says:

    At least ten simple grammar and punctuation errors mar your very first Author, Purpose, and Audience sections, mica. Find help if you have to, but figure out why these sentences are so full of comma splices and run-ons, stray commas and semicolons, plus extra words that ruin the syntax. Fix them and let me know you’re ready for another look. I don’t want to wait until your Throwdown is complete before concentrating on the details. This first section alone would fail for grammar repeatedly. It’s very risky at this stage of the semester to post such work.


  6. bloo1comp says:

    Doesn’t have Purposes sections for any of the three articles.

    Doesn’t have a My Take.

    A07, A08, and A09 all go in one post. (Throwdown-username)

    I used the link for your first article, you got the title backwards. There’s also no word “only” in it.

    There should be a comprehensive title that encompasses all three articles.

    You need information about the publications you chose.

    1st and 3rd summaries are massive and almost look as though you copied and pasted the articles themselves.


  7. velociraptor1comp says:

    -doesnt have a my take
    -a lot of information on each article
    -audience section is good and very specific; but no author writes to the general public
    – the summaries, especially on the 1st reading, seem a bit longer than it should be; since it is a summary, maybe not as much detailed information is needed. Also since the link to the article is included, a reader interested in more information can always research the original article
    – other than that, interesting topic that would make readers want to learn more


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