Education free essay: Should Schools remove soda machines from their school campus to reduce Obesity?
One of the major health issues facing the US is the increasing prevalence f obesity especially in children. Obesity in children is mainly caused by the consumption of junky foods. Soda is categorised among the junky foods that lead to obesity. Despite this, there are soda machines in most schools in the US that supply children with soda. In most cases, the amount of soda consumed by the children is not limited. Consumption of soda in schools is one of the leading causes of obesity in children (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.). Recent surveys have shown that the prevalence of obesity has more than doubled over the last three decades. A survey report released in 2012 indicated that the children with obesity aged 6 to 11 years in the US increased from 9 percent to 18 percent between 1980 and 2012. Over the same period, the percentage of young persons aged between 12 and 19 years with obesity increased from 5 percent and 21 percent. The findings of the survey also indicated that around one third of children in the US either obesity or overweight in 2012 (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention). The results of empirical studies indicate that the rate of obesity of obesity is lower among pre-school children than in children who attend school. In fact, the rate of obesity among pre-school children has been declining while the rate of obesity among children who attend schools has been increasing. Between 2012 and 2013, for instance, the prevalence of obesity among children aged 2 to 5 years decreased from 13.9 percent to 8.4 percent. The statistics provide a hint that obesity among the school children is caused by their consumption habits that is different from that of pre-school children (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention). Soda contains a lot of sugar. When consumed in large amounts, the intake leads to the presence of excess sugar in the body. The excess sugar in the body is turned into fat that is deposited around body organs. When too much fat is deposited around the body organs, a child eventually becomes obese.
The solution to the increasing rate of obesity among school children is to remove soda machines from schools. Some schools have realized the adverse impact of the soda machines and machines for other junky foods and drinks and they have banned them. For instance, around 44 percent of school districts in the US banned the machines in 2015. Although banning of the machines may not be the best solution to the problem of obesity, it will help to reduce prevent the obesity that is caused by the consumption of soda. Thus, it is essential that the soda machines be banned in all schools in the US.
Banning the soda machines is the best solution to the issue of the increasing rate of obesity among school children. Preventing the occurrence of obesity is better than curing it. In order to understand why preventing the occurrence of obesity is vital, it is essential to explore its effects. First, studies have shown obesity as a risk factor for high blood pressure. Obesity increases the blood volume, cardiac output, as well as arterial resistance (Akabas, Lederman, Moore 55). As well, it stimulates a high insulin secretion as the body tries to lower the excessive concentration of sugar in the blood, which is extremely high in comparison to non-obese subjects. Obese individuals become naturally resistant to insulin, in which case their bodies synthesize more insulin thereby resulting in increased blood pressure. In addition, obesity is one of the risk factors for severe heart attacks. Also, research has in the recent times established direct links between the occurrence of obesity and diabetes. As much as obesity has always been linked to numerous health issues, the increasing rates of obese individuals who are diagnosed with diabetes has triggered a closer look at the link between obesity and the manner in which an individual’s body uses glucose its key driving fuel. Researchers have established that the concurrence is not merely a coincidence (Blass 31). There are varied scientific explanations to this co-occurrence. Scientists have established the fact that fat cells release a protein that is known as PEDF, which is a crucial link to the development of type 2 diabetes. Studies show that the higher the level of excess fatty tissue that an individual’s body has, the higher the level of resistance to insulin. Other studies explain the connection between obesity and diabetes from the perspective of the endoplasmic reticulum, which they christen “the cell’s synthetic machine”. The endoplasmic reticulum is responsible for processing blood fats and proteins. According to these studies, obesity increases the stress on the system of membranes. These membranes, in turn, trigger a signal to the insulin receptors to halt their response, which renders the body incapable of properly responding to insulin (Blass 33).
Further, obesity has been recognized as a crucial risk factor to the development of varied respiratory diseases. This is especially for obesity-hypoventilation syndrome and obstructive sleep apnea. Recent studies show that obese individuals have increased prevalence of bronchial hyper-responsiveness and wheezing, which are commonly associated with the occurrence of asthma (Akabas, Lederman, Moore 61). Respiratory problems that are associated with being obese occur in instances where additional weight on the wall of the chest squeezes an individual’s lungs, thereby restricting breathing. Scientists acknowledge that the accumulation of fat tissue impairs ventilator functioning both in children and adults. Research shows that there is a relationship between increased BMI and a reduction in the forced expiratory volume per second, total lung capacity, Forced Vital Capacity, and the functional residual capacity, as well as expiratory reserve volume. On the same note, obesity is known to cause mild thoracic restriction, thanks to the mechanical effects of lipids or fats on the chest wall and diaphragm, where the excursion of the diaphragm is impeded and the compliance of the thoracic reduced (Akabas, Lederman, Moore 63).
Lastly, obesity has been shown to be a risk factor for over 20 cancers in the world. Studies show that a large number of cancers affect overweight or obese individuals including breast cancer, womb cancer, bowel cancer, pancreatic cancer, oesophageal cancer, kidney cancer, gallbladder cancer, and prostate cancer (Akabas, Lederman, Moore 63). While there may not be a clear link between cancers and obesity, scientists state that the fat tissues in obese individuals produce a higher amount of growth factors and hormones than is the case in individuals with healthy weight. These hormones include insulin and oestrogen, which may heighten an individual’s vulnerability to certain cancers (Akabas, Lederman, Moore 68).
Overall, obesity among school children in the US has been rising at a constant rate. The main cause of the increase is the consumption of junky foods and drinks in school. Soda is one of the drinks containing too much calories and sugar consumed in the schools. Considering the negative impacts that obesity has on the body, it is vital to prevent it. Therefore, one of the best solutions to the problem of obesity among school children is to ban soda machines. As explained in the above discussion, obesity is a risk factor for health problems such as heart cancer, respiratory diseases, high blood pressure and diabetes. Therefore, it is vital to prevent it through reducing access of soda to children.
Akabas, Sharon, Sally Ann Lederman, Barbara J. Moore. Textbook of obesity: Biological, psychological, and cultural influences. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: Wiley-Blackwell. 2012. Print.
Blass, Elliott M. Obesity: causes mechanisms, prevention, and treatment. Green Verlag:
Sinauer Associates. 2008. Print.
Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. “Childhood Obesity Facts.” 2016. Web. June 21.
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