Obesity isn’t just a problem in America despite the common stereotypes and jokes. Studies from June show that Israelis are gaining weight, too. The issue is worse than I ever expected. A study, conducted over a 35-year-period, found that 1-in-4 women in Israel are obese and 1-in-6 men are obese.
Weight-related problems are claiming millions of lives across the world annually.
The study found that between 1980 and 2015, male obesity rates rose from 11.2% to 16.57% and female obesity rates rose from 17.84% to 24%. If this isn’t enough to show that there is a fundamental problem in Israel (and we’re not alone), then I don’t know what is.
But it gets even worse.
Our youth is suffering even larger gains in obesity. Youth obesity rates rose from 3% to 7% during the 35-year study. If we don’t get a hold of the problem soon, it means that our kids will be the ones to suffer.
Obesity and health-related problems are claiming more lives, and if the trend continues, our kids will also be suffering from the same – or worse – health risks.
David Michigan, a fitness coach and worldwide actor, is working to help people understand that there are other options besides giving into cravings. “Sometimes for some people, it can be very difficult to stop being hungry. It seems like they have a lot of cravings or feel hungry all the time. It’s like they have no control over themselves, despite their willpower,” he states.
His recommendations include reducing rapid sugar intake, drinking water to flush toxins out of the body and staying satiated, and eating more protein.
But what else can we do to help teach our children better eating habits?
The study’s main goal was to determine the global reason behind obesity. Scientists, business leaders, and policymakers were present during the study’s reveal. Transforming the world’s food system will require a governmental effort just as much as it will to teach our kids to put down those sugary foods.
Taxation can be used as a weapon against the rise in obesity.
An unhealthy environment that seemingly makes it easier to become obese than cook needs to change. Processed foods are all around us, and marketing has made it almost “a must” to eat foods with sugar.
Sugary, high-caloric drinks can be taxed to make consumers buy them less and to help push manufacturers to offer healthier alternatives. Healthy foods should be given a tax breaks. Reduce the custom duties on healthy foods and introduce campaigns to demonstrate the severity of obesity in Israel.
Residents have become almost blind to the fact that a large portion of adults, and children, have been gaining weight.
It’s almost the norm to see people being overweight and considering them “a normal weight.” Campaigns against the sugar-filled foods that admittedly taste good yet have a lifelong potential of damage must be implemented. Campaigns that discuss the risks and issues with sweetened foods, fast food and processed food would help Israel get back on track to being healthy this coming year.
The problem is that there is no blueprint to follow. New York Times reports that no nation has been able to reduce obesity in 33 years. But starting to educate the public and punish the companies behind the rise in obesity is a good start.