The Serious Issue of Food Addiction & the Obesity Epidemic

The obesity epidemic is a serious health issue across the globe, especially childhood obesity. The condition is easy for anyone to diagnose, but treatment for obesity continues to frustrate obese individuals and treatment professionals alike. Much of the problem stems from the fact that the exact nature and causes of obesity are still uncertain.

  • Is obesity a biological disease, genetically predetermined and inherited?
  • Is it the product of a dysfunctional society, in which activity is undervalued, and nutrient-poor foods are prized for their taste and convenience?
  • Is obesity a matter of personal responsibility, affecting people who make poor choices about their diet and exercise habits despite the consequences?

With each of these possibilities, the responsibility falls on a different sector of society to provide a solution.

  • If obesity is a biological disease, can scientists and doctors find an effective treatment?
  • If obesity is a social problem, the responsibility lies predominantly with policymakers and other leaders of society to change the ways in which food and activity are made accessible and attractive to the population. Do individuals simply need to stop searching for excuses and change their personal habits?

The truth is most likely a mixture of all three of these factors and solutions. A tendency toward obesity has been shown to have the same hereditability as height, demonstrating that obesity is genetically determined to a certain extent. Obesity should be considered a disease. Nevertheless, a good diet combined with exercise is currently the only reliable way to go from obese to a healthy weight. This is a relatively straightforward solution, but sticking to a healthy diet has proved to be extremely challenging and frustrating for many people, from those who are obese to those who are just hoping to shed a few pounds. The fact that so many people continue to eat unhealthy foods when they know it puts their health at risk has led researchers to explore a new possibility: could obesity be the result of addiction? Read More About: tutflix

The parallels between the drug-seeking behavior of addicts and the food cravings, overeating, and disregard for healthy dietary guidelines that overweight or obese people exhibit has long been apparent. However, the concept of food addiction presents difficulties that many addiction hypotheses do not face. Human beings need to eat, and we experience hunger when we have gone too long without ingesting any food. When attempting to identify genuine food cravings, researchers need to be able to separate what behavior is the result of the biological need to eat and what may be an addictive behavior.

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Furthermore, eating food is often a pleasurable experience, and certain foods are especially attractive to our senses of taste and smell. Researchers also need to identify the difference between liking food and craving food. Fortunately, brain-imaging technology now permits them to view the neurological activity of their subjects and to compare the active areas to the areas that are active in the brain of a drug addict. If the evidence for the addictive properties of food continues to grow, it opens up new possibilities for treating obesity.

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