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Obesity. The purpose of this assignment is to analyse how an individuals lifestyle and cultural influences has been an underlining factor in causing their medical condition. I will be looking at their lifestyle and the environment in which they

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A 2500 word assignment based on an individual who has health care problems due to their lifestyle and cultural influences, looking at the response of the health service, policies and practices, the structure and teams that provide their care. The purpose of this assignment is to analyse how an individual's lifestyle and cultural influences has been an underlining factor in causing their medical condition. I will be looking at their lifestyle and the environment in which they live in, how statistically trends have influenced the healthcare provision, the structure in healthcare systems involved and their contribution. I will be looking specifically at Childhood Obesity. Obesity is a condition in which excess fat has accumulated in the body and an individual has a Body Mass Index of over 30 in adults (Oxford, 2008). The World Health Organisation (2007) defines Body Mass Index (BMI) as a simple index of weight-height ratio that is commonly used to classify underweight, overweight and obesity in adults. However, in children over the age of 5 this is adjusted to take into account their age and gender and healthcare professionals now more commonly use the term percentile which uses a percentage of the overall BMI. The categories are set out are overweight being over the 85th percentile and obese being over 95th percentile. ...read more.


These are set up in disadvantaged areas to promote healthy eating and cooking (Sure Start, 1995). A further intervention is the Department of Health's 5 a day scheme which is to encourage individuals to eat more fruit and vegetables. The School Fruit and Vegetable Scheme is part of the 5 a day programme to increase fruit and vegetable consumption in children. Under the Scheme, all four to six year old children in infant, primary and special schools will be entitled to a free piece of fruit or vegetable each school day. Teachers found that distributing the fruit in schools helped encourage a sharing, calm, social time. Fruit and vegetables are important in achieving a healthier lifestyle and research has shown that on average, children in England eat only two portions a day, with many eating fewer than that (NHS, 2005). Healthy Start is another initiative which is a voucher scheme that can be exchanged for fresh fruit and vegetables as well as milk and infant formula. It will also ensure that pregnant women and families quality help and advice about living and maintaining a healthy family life (NHS, 2010b). As the Olympic Games are fast approaching the Government have introduced a very clever initiative called 'Be Active, Be Healthy' which instantly promotes that in order to be healthy you need to keep active. ...read more.


As in the case of Lewis the school nurse and dietician will both be regulated and will both be adhering to their regulator. In summary, as I highlighted earlier unfortunately childhood obesity is on the rise in the United Kingdom. The main factor in this is due to children's lifestyles and the environment in which they live in. There are games consoles, television programmes, advertising, computers and an easy access to fast food with children often preferring sugary treats rather than a piece of fruit. With more parents able to drive the impact is that children then do less walking and physical activity outdoors which all contributes to an unhealthy lifestyle which subsequently leads to obesity if not acted upon before it gets out of control. There are massive government initiatives and campaigns that will hopefully increase awareness of the importance of maintaining a healthy balance diet, keeping active and also the dangers of obesity with the health implications it can cause. It is important for health professionals and schools to promote this and encourage children and their families to adapt their lifestyles accordingly in order for obesity levels to be controlled, as obesity is extremely hard to treat and much easier to prevent. Lewis eventually received professional help and advice which has enabled him and his mother to treat his obesity. However if his mother had more awareness then Lewis' obesity could have been prevented. ...read more.

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