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Obesity

Nurses   (2,963 Views 21 Comments)
by MM2007 MM2007 (Member) Member

1,919 Profile Views; 47 Posts

Hello,

What are the psychosocial factors surrounding obesity.

Thanks,

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mercyteapot has 20 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Dev. Disabilities, Health Disparities.

2,756 Posts; 21,816 Profile Views

A few off the top of my head...

Poverty- contributing both to difficulty paying for nourishing food and to living in neighborhoods in it is dangerous to allow children to play outside

Single parent or two parent working households- contributing to children spending too much time on computers, video games or watching the television and not engaging in physical activities

Depression

ADHD

OCD

PTSD

And other mental health dx can contribute to obesity

High stress lifestyles- difficulty of managing the demands of job/career, finances, home and family responsibilities, etc.

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ginger58 is a ASN, RN and specializes in Palliative Care, NICU/NNP.

464 Posts; 7,556 Profile Views

Feeling of isolation, hard to live in a thin society, sense of discrimination, inferiority, less choice of clothing, often in denial.

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hogan4736 has 13 years experience as a BSN, RN.

739 Posts; 6,936 Profile Views

In kids: Less physical education requirements than 30 years ago - It's either optional, or only once/week...

when I was a kid - Mon-Friday

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60 Posts; 1,693 Profile Views

A few off the top of my head...

Poverty- contributing both to difficulty paying for nourishing food and to living in neighborhoods in it is dangerous to allow children to play outside

Single parent or two parent working households- contributing to children spending too much time on computers, video games or watching the television and not engaging in physical activities

Depression

ADHD

OCD

PTSD

And other mental health dx can contribute to obesity

High stress lifestyles- difficulty of managing the demands of job/career, finances, home and family responsibilities, etc.

I would also add chronic health issues depending on their severity that interfer with exercise like asthma, chronic pain.

Low Self-Esteem

Also certain medications-although the literature will tell you Depo Provera doesn't add to significant weight gain, I personally gained a lot of weight on it and know several other people. Lithium and other older psych meds.

Genetic predisposition

Modern conveniences-the little things that people used to have to do in their daily lives that didn't individually burn many calories but added up to a significant amount over time-automatic garage door opener versus getting out of your car and lifting the door up; riding lawn-mower versus push lawn mower; remote control for the TV or stereo instead of having to get up and change the channlel every time you wanted to; moving sidewalks versus walking etc.

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VIXEN007 specializes in Med-Surg.

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Ditto on the above post. When I was a kid, we spent time outside on our bikes, if we had them, or running if we didn't. We did not spend all day sitting in front of computer games and eating junk food.

We only drank milk or water. If we were lucky, we got some Tang in the morning. We had very few sweets. Obesity is a choice. It takes a lot of effort to become fat and remain fat. My mom always said that the U.S. is the only country in the world with fat, poor people.

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StrwbryblndRN has 9 years experience and specializes in CMSRN.

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Obesity is a choice. It takes a lot of effort to become fat and remain fat. My mom always said that the U.S. is the only country in the world with fat, poor people.

I agree that obesity is a choice for many. However it does not take a lot of effort. That's why people are fat. It is easy to sit around and eat easy to fix foods.

Everyone has their reasons for their habits, and it is just not cut and dry as to why people are fat or thin. Previous posts listed many reasons. Some of them are not easy to conquer. Eating and being sedentary is the easy but temporary way of feeling better. But there are alot of people with no issues who just do not care too.

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jill48 is a ASN, RN and specializes in Med/Surg, Geri, Ortho, Telemetry, Psych.

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i know this is a little bit :offtopic: , but i always found it ironic that in ancient times obesity was a sign of wealth (these were the people who got to eat whatever and whenever they wanted), and now it is a sign (just one of the signs) of poverty because poverty-stricken individuals eat so much fast food and cannot afford nutritious meats, veggies, and fruits. very odd how that worked out.

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Becca608 specializes in med-surg.

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Obesity is a choice. It takes a lot of effort to become fat and remain fat. My mom always said that the U.S. is the only country in the world with fat, poor people.

Yes and no. For my Developmental Psychology class, I did a paper on 'Who is responsible for the obesity epidemic in America'. Here's few bits and pieces that will hopefully help out the OP. I also recommend the book 'Fast Food Nation'. There are several other books out there that have been published over the past 5 years, but I can't recall the names off the top of my head.

1. Obesity has risen 30% over the past 30 years. By coincidence(?), the rate began to increase after manufacturers started using high-fructose corn syrup as a sweetener. No proven link has been consistently found however.

2. The school lunch room and schools in general are no longer providing lessons in healthy eating. They may talk about it in class, but the reality is that fast-food chains and soda manufacturers pay kickbacks to the schools to have thier product sold and promoted at that school. Textbooks are even affected by this--thier products are promoted in the books themselves. The kids can't get away from it.

3. The usual suspects...poor education, parents who work extra jobs to pay the bills and aren't home to model/supervise nutritional health.

4. Fact...grocery stores in some poorer communities provide produce that is lower in quality than in wealthy communities AT A HIGHER PRICE. Double whammy there!

5. A world where many families have a single parent and the families with two parents lead a lifestyle that requires both to work. This is combined with a world where we are painfully aware of the possible dangers to children beyond the boundaries of thier home. Kids come home and have to entertain themselves INSIDE until parents arrive. This leads to the TV and the video games. I've seen this in action the last 5-6 years. When my nephews were smaller (8 and10) and thier mom went back to work, they had to barricade themselves in after school. They lounged for two hours until me or thier parents could get over there. The constant video games worried me. Now they are teens and can go out as long as they stay together. Video games have become a rainy day activity and they are both more active.

There's alot of material out there--just go to amazon books and type in 'obesity' and you should be able to get the titles of 4-5 excellent books on the topic. Good luck! :smiley_ab

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JenNJFLCA has 6 years experience.

447 Posts; 4,052 Profile Views

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I agree that obesity is a choice for many. However it does not take a lot of effort. That's why people are fat. It is easy to sit around and eat easy to fix foods.

Everyone has their reasons for their habits, and it is just not cut and dry as to why people are fat or thin. Previous posts listed many reasons. Some of them are not easy to conquer. Eating and being sedentary is the easy but temporary way of feeling better. But there are alot of people with no issues who just do not care too.

If only this were true.

People overeat for many reasons

Depression

Boredom

Anxiety

Low self-esteem

OCD

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scrubsnhugsRN specializes in ER/AMS/OPD/UC.

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One risk factor for obesity...nursing school. I gained so much weight during nursing school it is unbelievable. Another thing, not all people who are overweight overeat. Gaining weight is a matter of calories vs excercise. Less excersise, less expendeture, need less calories. Depending on metabolism, one can gain weight even if thier intake is very low! Not all fat people stuff thier face.

Example; when i was in nursing school I was mostly sedentary because of all the computerwork and studying. When I was in Nutrition class I calculated my expendature and it was only 500 calories! So if I ate more than 500 calories I would gain weight. Do you know how many calories is in a mocha? Alot more than 500. So I did not gain weight because I have low self esteem......hehe, it was a time issue, not getting off my butt and going for a walk.

Of course I take responsibilty for it, regardless, but not all fat people have low self esteem or gorge on doughnuts while at home...keep it in mind.

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