Obesity Continues to Rise: Alarming Statistics Promote Change


Americans are fast becoming known as some of the old most obese an overweight in global populations. This is both worrisome and embarrassing to those living in the U.S., where, according to recent statistics.

According to veteran news writer Bill Hendrick, writing for WebMD, obesity rates have increased in nearly half of the states in America in the past year, with 38 states admitting that obesity rates have risen over 25%. The highest obesity rates are found in the south, with Mississippi earning the dubious distinction of being the most obese state in the Union.

Alarming Statistics
Even more worrisome, over 10 million children today are either overweight or obese, leading to concerns about health problems appearing in children and teens that are normally only seen in middle aged to elderly individuals. America is known as the junk food capital of the world, which is little surprise, considering that nearly every corner in every city across United States has some sort of fast food restaurant on it.

Mississippi isn’t the only state with a high percentage of obese individuals, according to WebMD. Alabama and Tennessee, North Carolina and Michigan, Oklahoma and Arkansas are also high in obesity rankings. The need for education, increased physical fitness, and resources to battle this rising academic is increasing.

More teens, as well as adults of all ages than ever before are qualifying for bariatric and obesity weight loss procedures. Common procedures performed th performed for obese individuals includes but is not limited to:

  • Open and Laparoscopic
  • Adjustable Gastric Band
  • Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB)
  • Gastric Sleeve
  • Biliopancreatic Bypass with the Duodenal Switch

Individuals considered obese and who opt for bariatric surgery must also be willing to make lifestyle changes in diet and exercise for optimal benefits and long term health and wellness. Bariatric surgery is typically recommended for those who have been unable to lose weight through normal dieting and exercise programs. Those in danger of obese related disease processes such as hypertension or diabetes are often encouraged to take steps to get their weight back under control.

Most medical practitioners consider bariatric surgery procedures as a last effort to help the severely obese regain control of their lives and requires serious consideration. To facilitate and encourage this some individuals who undergo bariatric surgery seek the help of therapists and nutritionists to help with this difficult part of the process.

Benefits of Bariatric Procedures
Any individual between the age of 15 and 50 years may be a good candidate for gastric bypass surgery. The procedure is typically reserved for those who are more than 75 pounds overweight and have a body mass index of 40 to 50 or 35 to 39 with a life threatening co-morbidity factor such as diabetes, heart disease or orthopedic joint issues. Weight loss measures may help improve conditions including high blood cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, and coronary artery disease. In addition, other body systems, including a digestive, endocrine, and immune system benefit.

Bariatric Surgery Options and Costs
Several forms of bariatric surgery are available. Restrictive bariatric surgical procedures are designed to generally reduce the size of the stomach and to limit the amount of food a person can eat at one sitting. Examples of such surgical procedures include lap banding, also known as LAGB, for laparoscopic gastric banding, vertical banded gastroplasty, sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass.

Weight-loss surgical procedures are very expensive in the United States, and may range anywhere from $17,000-$30,000 per procedure. While the benefits in long-term health and quality of life often make such a choice not only necessary, but reasonable in the long run, funding such procedures is often beyond the means of many individuals.

Gastric bypass surgery using the Roux-en-Y technique may cost as much as $25,000. the same technique performed in India costs roughly $16,500; while in medical travel destinations in South America, costs may hover around $10,000 and often time include all-inclusive stay benefits.