Obesity and Income in the Us

Topics: Obesity, United States, Nutrition Pages: 5 (1321 words) Published: January 22, 2013

Obesity in United States
The Impact of Family Income on BMI

Fort Lauderdale April 15, 201

1.0 Executive Summary

The rising rate of obesity has reached epidemic proportions and is now one of the most serious Public Health’s challenges facing the US. However, the underlying causes for this increase are unclear. This paper examines the effect of family income changes on body mass index (BMI) and obesity using data from the BRFSS, a state-based system of health surveys that generate information about health risk behaviors, clinical preventive practices, and health care access and use primarily related to chronic diseases and injury. A sample of 30 subjects has been randomly selected in the state of Florida for the year 2010; the causal impact of family income has been estimated on BMI in a set of women and men with BMI ≥ 30. Family income has been identified using differences in the level of annual salary earnings, individuals were organized in two categories: Group I [$0 - $24,999]

Group II [$25,000 - ]
The results indicate that income has a positive effect on BMI and the probability of being obese for low-income women and man, with the effect of income on BMI increasing over the BMI distribution. Understanding the causal association between income and BMI would contribute to more effective public-health interventions, and if income positively affects obesity rates, avert counterproductive policies.

2.1 Hypothesis:
. Ho: µ ≥ $24.999
Ha: µ < $24.999

2.0 Introduction
Weight has been rising in the United States throughout the twentieth century, but the rise in obesity since 1980 is fundamentally different from past changes. For most of the twentieth century, weights were below levels recommended maximum longevity (Fogel, 1994), and the increase in weight represented increase in health, not a decrease. Today, Americans are fatter than medical science recommends, and weights are still increasing. While many other countries have experienced significant increases in obesity, no other developed country is quite as heavy as the United States. Obesity is an epidemic in the United States and in other developed countries. More than two-thirds of Americans are overweight, including at least one in five children. Nearly one-third are obese. Obesity is on the rise in our society because food is abundant and physical activity is optional. On the bright side, recent data suggest that childhood obesity, while still high, may no longer be on the rise. While all segments of the population are affected, low-income and food insecure people are especially vulnerable due to the additional risk factors associated with poverty, including limited resources, limited access to healthy and affordable foods, and limited opportunities for physical activity. Even individuals who are highly motivated can have difficulty eating healthy and being active if their environments do not support or allow such behaviors (Institute of Medicine, 2009). In addition, households with limited resources to buy enough food often try to stretch their food budgets by purchasing cheap, energy-dense foods that are filling – meaning that they try to maximize their calories per dollar in order to stave off hunger. Those who are food insecure may also overeat when food does become available, resulting in chronic ups and downs in food intake that can contribute to weight gain. This is especially a problem for low-income women, who often restrict their food intake to protect their children from hunger. 3.0 Situation Analysis

Obesity in the United States has been increasingly cited as a major health issue in recent...
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