Scottproposal - Background and Significance Within the past...

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Background and Significance Within the past ten years obesity and its health-related conditions have cost over 150 billion dollars and have caused an estimated 300,000 premature deaths in the United States (WHO, 2001). Causal factors contributing to these statistics are primarily due to urbanization, globalization, increased food production and behavioral changes that include changes in lifestyle and diet (NIH, 1998). What has been observed is that these changes and developments in lifestyles and behavior have contributed to increased numbers of type-2 diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancer. Body Mass Indices (BMI) of 25 or higher, poor diet, inactivity, race and age (2000) are factors that contribute to higher incidences of non-communicable diseases. The New York City Department of Mental Health and Hygiene indicates that some 173,500 adult New Yorkers became obese and more than 73,000 were newly diagnosed with diabetes from 2002 to 2004 (DMH, 2008). Furthermore, the city’s rates of obesity and diagnosed diabetes both increased by 17% during the two-year study period. Obesity increased among both whites (20%) and Hispanics (14%), whereas the nation experienced a significant increase only among whites ((7%) In addition, the obesity rate among older New Yorkers rose by 28%, while the estimated national rate held steady. Among foreign-born New Yorkers, the obesity rate shot up by 33%, going from 16.8% in 2002 to 22.4% in 2004(DMH, 2008). These subgroups are significant because whites and Hispanics comprise nearly two thirds of the city’s population, and the number of aging Hispanic and foreign-born New Yorkers is increasing rapidly. Factors Contributing to Obesity Causal factors related to high incidences of obesity in poor communities of color can be attributed to; 1) the psychosocial and/or cultural perceptions regarding obesity; 2) the lack of education about risk factors associated with obesity; and 3) the lack of material resources. In communities where resources are deficient, the exhibition of wealth becomes a marker for status, success and surplus. For example, in poor communities, the opportunity to eat at a restaurant is a marker for success; however, if the quality of food served at the restaurant is low, such practices contribute to poor eating habits and obesity(Schlienger and Pradignac 2009) Education about caloric intake and the risk factors associated with obesity are necessary components often lacking in poorer communities. Structurally, material resources such as low cost quality produce, livable wages and healthy prepared food options are nonexistent or scarce in poorer communities of color. All of which contribute to obesity rates being higher when compared to communities where these resources are available(Dammann and Smith 2009). In 2004 a New York Community Health Survey was conducted by the National Behavioral Risk
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This note was uploaded on 05/04/2010 for the course GPH SG567 taught by Professor Smith during the Spring '10 term at New York College of Podiatric Medicine.

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Scottproposal - Background and Significance Within the past...

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