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Obesity Health Promotion: Need, Implications, and Potential Innovations

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Added on  2023-06-04

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This assignment discusses the need for health promotion in obesity, policy in the area and why it may not be working and potential innovations for future practice. It discusses the risk factors, implications and determinants of obesity and potential ways of improving the situation.

Obesity Health Promotion: Need, Implications, and Potential Innovations

   Added on 2023-06-04

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Obesity 1
By (Student’s Name)
Course Title
Tutor’s Name
University’s Name
Obesity Health Promotion: Need, Implications, and Potential Innovations_1
Obesity 2
Health Promotion
The World Health organization defines health promotion as a set of actions/process
whose aim is to equip people to have more control over their health. Baum (2016) adds that
health promotion is more than just ensuring that people change their behaviours to a direction
that enhances health and wellbeing. It includes focusing on a wide range of factors that
influence health. These factors could be social, environmental, political, economic etc. Health
promotion is very important in the contemporary society. The reason for this is that there are
so many factors affecting health and wellbeing that lie outside the health system (Gostin and
Wiley 2016). In a society where there are so many factors that influence the health and
wellbeing of individuals and populations, it is paramount to embrace a holistic approach
towards promoting health (Phull, Wills and Dickinson, 2015). It follows that health
promotion is multisectoral.
Health promotion is important in all parts of the globe. While the disease and
morbidity patterns may be different for various regions, health promotion will always be
relevant (Hemenway, 2017). One of the key areas that require health promotion is obesity.
Obesity was once considered a condition of the high income (developed) countries. The
situation is now different however. The condition has also become rampant in developing
nations such as Kenya (Kimani-Murage et al. 2015). There are so many factors that
contribute to the increase in the number of people with overweight and obesity. These include
adoption of western diet, sedentary lifestyles, among other factors as will be seen in the
subsequent sections of this assignment. Extensive research has shown that obesity is a risk
factor for several chronic diseases of lifestyles such as cardiovascular diseases, some types of
cancer and diabetes mellitus type 2. In Kenya, the chronic diseases of lifestyles are slowly but
Obesity Health Promotion: Need, Implications, and Potential Innovations_2
Obesity 3
surely rising to be among the leading causes of death. Several years ago, the main worry for
Kenya was infectious diseases such as malaria. Today, cancer and other chronic illnesses
have become rampant and are raising an alarm already. Extensive research reveals that
preventing overweight and obesity could significantly reduce the incidence and prevalence of
chronic diseases of lifestyle. It follows that one of the key areas that requires health
promotion in Kenya and many nations of the world is obesity. this assignment will focus on
the need for health promotion in obesity, policy in the area and why it may not be working
and potential innovations for future practice.
Obesity and the Need for Health Promotion
The World Health Organization defines obesity as condition in which there is
excessive accumulation of fat in the body to the extent that it poses risk to health. The body
Mass Index (BMI) is a measure that is used to measure overweight and obesity in a crude
manner in populations. The BMI measure is a comparison of a person’s weight (in kilograms)
to the square of their height (in metres). If the measure is 30 or more, the person is said to
The distribution of obesity in many nations is uneven. This is in terms of regions, sex
and other factors. In Kenya for instance, the prevalence of obesity is more among women
than men. Research shows that twice as many women as men have obesity in Kenya. The
geographical distribution of obesity is also uneven with more cases of obesity being observed
in Nairobi and the central region of the country (Kimani, Sharif and Bashir 2016). Obesity is
rising at alarming levels and there is dire need for intervention. The condition has risen to
become one of the major public health concerns in many countries (Frumkin 2016). If
nothing is done about this situation, mortality rates due to conditions associated with obesity
Obesity Health Promotion: Need, Implications, and Potential Innovations_3
Obesity 4
may rise to unprecedented levels. To illustrate the importance of health promotion around
obesity, it is important to discuss the risk factors, the implications and the determinants of
obesity. Potential ways of improving the situation (health promotion will also be discussed).
Risk Factors for Obesity and How Health promotion Could Lead to a Reduction
in Risk
It is important to appreciate that there are a wide range of factors that contribute to
development of obesity. Even so there are two principal causes of obesity. These are physical
inactivity and unhealthy eating habits (Charles 2015). These two and other important factors
will be discussed in this section. Potential health promotion ways will also be discussed.
Physical inactivity is one of the major contributors to obesity. When a person is not
physically active, the body expends very little calories of the energy obtained from foods.
The other calories are converted to fat and stored in the body. In men, this fat is mainly stored
in the abdominal area while in women it is mainly stored in the hip region. The environment
favours sedentary lifestyles. For instance, an individual may go to work by means of a car,
spend the better part of the day seated in an office and the n go back home by car means. This
individual is likely to expend very little calories which may contribute to weight gain and
obesity. Since the government is the principal healthcare provider of the nation, it could carry
out health promotion through its ministry of health to encourage people to be physically
active. There are two categories of time-exercise recommended for individuals. One is
vigorous activity for at least 30 minutes daily or moderate physical activity for at least one
hour daily (Yanek et al. 2016). Extensive body of research reveals that if that were to be
done, then the risk for being overweight/obese would greatly reduce (Naidoo and Wills
2016). The government could therefore promote physical activity vigorously to its citizens.
Obesity Health Promotion: Need, Implications, and Potential Innovations_4

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