Obesity: Who’s responsible?
The obesity epidemic seems to be getting worse, but who’s actually responsible?
There’s one thing that most people agree on when it comes to the obesity problem the UK (and many other countries) - it needs to be reduced, dramatically.
Whenever I see articles in the news talking about the obesity epidemic and how to solve it, it appears those who are obese are blaming others, the government are blaming doctors, with nobody actually taking responsibility. So who is actually at fault? Are those who are obese to blame? Should the government do more? Should doctors do more?
I’ve never been a fan of what the government have done when it comes to obesity. They recently updated the ‘eat well plate’ and it’s still a joke in my eyes. It’s still very generic, very little information on different lifestyles and too many carbs considering many jobs are sedentary these days. I do believe that they can do more, but they’re not the cause in my eyes. They can implement things such as free gym memberships, free diet plans, education on cooking, food shopping, daily exercise routines etc.
The role of doctors with obesity can be an important one. The one problem with this, is that many people don’t listen to their GP’s (with some GP’s being overweight themselves). They are in the position where they can monitor their patients weight and help to ensure they’re on the right track. The fact is, the public can see their GP for free, they don’t have to pay for a check up, but the NHS was never created to deal with certain issues, it was created to help people who have unforeseen problems. That brings me on to the next point.
The obese individuals need to take responsibility. I’ve done enough research, spoken to obese people, spoken to other nutritionists and personal trainers. Many obese people do not realise the health issues that obesity brings – they simply carry on with their lives. They also think they will be fine because they have the NHS, so if they need some medication or an operation, they can have it.
I once watched a program which had four obese individuals talking about being obese and fat shaming. They couldn’t care less with being in excess of 22 stone in weight. They claimed they loved their lives and people need to ‘back off’. Then they spoke about their lifestyles. They couldn’t walk for very long without getting out of breath, they couldn’t play with their children, they couldn’t fit in certain seats, they had to take a number of pills every day, one was on a waiting list for a knee replacement because their weight has destroyed their own knee joint. They then began talking about obesity and said people should have the right to live their lives the way they want, but they can see it being a ‘slight problem’. When asked what should be done, they said ‘the government need to control how products are sold’. Not once did they take responsibility for their weight gain, they simply blamed the government.
The government can bring in different protocols to help lower the obesity rate, but unless people are willing to change their lifestyles and take responsibility, then nothing will change. The NHS is at breaking point, and the government can’t keep finding ways to raise money to try and solve the problem. The NHS problem isn’t financial, it’s simply overwhelmed. The amount of treatments you can get on the NHS nowadays outweighs the funding. Obesity, along with smoking are two of the biggest financial strains. However, with the lack of responsibility and people just passing the buck, nothing will change.
This post will most likely come across as harsh, and I do know that not all obese individuals have got themselves into that situation, but a large percentage have. The same with smokers. Passing the buck is easy, taking responsibility is not.
If people are willing to change their ways, if the government will spend money in the right way to implement new protocols, and doctors monitoring their patients, I do believe that the obesity epidemic can be greatly reduced.
Lee Gregory Fitness
(picture from google)