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Obesity in the modern world: How our health is shaped by our environment

In contemporary health issues, Obesity is emerging as a growing concern, It shapes public health debates and policies globally.

Today , the prevalence of obesity is not simply a result of individual lifestyle choices but is deeply intertwined with the environment in which we live.

This article explores how the modern world and our surroundings dramatically impact obesity rates and overall health.

Environmental influence on obesity

Obesity in the modern world

The modern environment, characterized by urbanization, technological progress, and changing work patterns, plays a pivotal role in the emergence of obesity:

Food Environment : Our surrounding environment is saturated with easily accessible processed foods that contain high calories. Fast food outlets, vending machines and convenience stores serve fast food that is high in calories, which contributes to excessive calorie consumption and weight gain.

Sedentary lifestyle : The modern work environment, dominated by office jobs, encourages a sedentary lifestyle. Along with increasingly spent free time in front of screens, a significant decline in physical activity is a crucial factor in the obesity equation.

Urban Design and Transportation : Modern urban planning often needs more infrastructure for physical activity. The dominance of motorized transportation over walking or cycling and the scarcity of parks and recreational places contribute to low levels of physical activity.

Psychological and social aspects

The environment also affects the psychological and social factors that contribute to obesity:

Stress and Emotional Eating : The fast-paced, high-stress environment of modern life can lead to emotional eating as a coping mechanism.
Social Norms and Influence : As obesity rates increase, there is a shift in the perception of what is considered a “normal” body size, which may lead to societal acceptance of unhealthy weight.

The role of government and politics

Addressing the environmental causes of obesity requires action at the government and policy levels:

  • Regulating food advertising : Governments can regulate advertising of unhealthy foods, especially targeting children, to reduce the impact of these products.
  • Urban planning for active lifestyles : Incorporating green spaces, bike lanes, and pedestrian-friendly infrastructure can encourage more active lifestyles.
  • Support healthy foods : Making healthy food choices affordable and accessible can lead to changes in eating habits.

Individual responsibility and teamwork

Obesity in the modern world

It is essential to realize that individual choices regarding health and wellness are greatly influenced by environmental factors. While personal responsibility is crucial, Teamwork is equally important in promoting healthy living.

One effective way to achieve this is to raise public awareness about healthy lifestyle choices. By educating individuals about the benefits of healthy eating and exercise, They can make more informed decisions and take control of their health.

Another effective approach is community initiatives that promote healthy living.

Local initiatives such as community gardens and fitness groups can create a supportive environment that encourages and motivates individuals to make healthy choices.

Community initiatives foster a sense of belonging and provide opportunities to participate in health activities, Which can improve overall well-being.

therefore Through a combination of education and awareness campaigns and community initiatives, We can create a more supportive and empowering environment that promotes healthy living. This approach can lead to long-term benefits for individuals and society as a whole, Such as reducing health care costs and improving quality of life.

A comprehensive approach to treating obesity

Obesity in the modern world

at the end, Addressing obesity in the modern world requires a comprehensive approach that takes into account environmental factors. By creating environments that support healthy choices, Regulating factors that contribute to unhealthy lifestyles, Promoting societal transformation towards health awareness, We can fight the obesity epidemic.

It is a challenge that calls for coordinated efforts among individuals, communities, policy makers and health professionals to create a healthier future for all.

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    Dr. Gökmen Ozturk is an expert and professor of bariatric surgery in Turkey, Istanbul, 22 years of experience in the field of bariatric surgery in Turkey Istanbul

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