Obesity and Physical Fitness
Obesity is becoming a problem in our country on an epidemic level, and we can all improve our health if we put some effort into it. Obesity can put your body at risk for very serious health problems, so physical fitness would be very necessary to prevent these complications. Since 1985, obesity has increased to approximately 30% of all Americans. Obesity also affects about 1/6 of all children in America. If we do not improve our health and fitness now, these numbers could rise at a very alarming rate.
Obesity is common among people who live a very sedentary lifestyle. Although obesity affects middle to upper income Americans, it greatly affects those who have a low income. This happens because many healthy foods cost more than some people can afford. Maybe instead of buying a fattening snack, you could buy some fruits or vegetables. Also, instead of spending money on a sugar-filled soda, you could purchase a bottle of water or some milk. They are many healthy substitutes to take the place of unhealthy foods you may have been buying. But to maintain a healthy weight, you must have a healthy diet and good and regular exercise.
Exercise is the one way to stay fit that is being constantly ignored by Americans. Although some people take exercise very seriously, exercise can be very simple. Activities like walking, yard work, and dancing are some forms of minor exercises available to most Americans. But sometimes exercise has to be more than just simple household tasks. Some normal but affective ways to exercise are swimming, jogging, and tennis. But these methods of fitness will only be affective if people are willing to spend at least a bear minimum of 30 minutes a day, or 150 minutes a week to maintain a healthy weight.
The message about fitness needs to be supported strongly for it to really take affect. Good health and physical fitness is stressed to many Americans, but the lack of support makes it forgettable. Most people hear it, but little do anything about it. Here in Nebraska, about 30% of people are obese. This alarming number exists because most people are either afraid, too lazy, or think that they will have to change their lives so they can start the path to fitness and health. Contrary to these beliefs, most people change very little in their lives when they begin the journey to good health and fitness.
Most Americans also believe that fitness can only be achieved by exercise. This isn’t the exact truth. Most weight loss occurs because of a decreased calorie intake. If you were to cut back on unhealthy snacks, and exercise regularly, you could lose some weight and become physically fit. Once people start a healthy diet and become physically fit, they will find many benefits. Physical fitness has been shown to improve your mood and to boost your confidence. Although it is psychologically beneficial, fitness also helps reduce risks for coronary heart disease, hypertension, and colon cancer.
Although fitness may not be popular among some Americans, it should be a very big part of our lives. Even though in today’s world, where obesity is a major catalyst in our lives, we can still bring an end to poor health in America. Obesity doesn’t have to control your life; you can put a stop to poor health. If we all decided to improve our health, the numbers of obese people and those with poor health would drop drastically. Together, we can create a healthy and fit America.
Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity. October 3, 2011. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. March 27, 2012. <http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpao/index.html>. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
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Pasternak, Harley. “Express workout.” Fitness March 2012: 40-66