This study seeks to explain the relationship between poverty and obesity among adults in the UK and the USA so as to provide a recommendation on how to address the epidemic from the socio-economic perspective. A significant amount of research has been carried out to explain the different factors associated with obesity in developed countries, some of the literature has focused on diet (Gikes et al. , 2011; ), childhood lifestyle (Long et al. , 2012), and other factors (Himes and Reynolds, 2005; El-Sayed et al. , 2011; Lumpkin, 2012 ). These studies aim towards contributing to a body of knowledge that will enhance the understanding of underlying factors in the prevalence of obesity in these countries so as to develop relevant interventions. However, a quick search through the literature available in academic and healthcare databases shows that there is a shortage of literature discussing the relationship between poverty and obesity among adults.
Poverty is largely covered under socio-economic factors among other factors that are associated with obesity in the UK and USA but it is not critically examined as an individual factor that may have a direct cause-effect relationship with obesity (El-Sayed et al. , 2011).
This study seeks to contribute knowledge towards addressing the gap of knowledge about the effect of poverty on obesity in the two countries. This will be achieved by examining different statistics that link adults suffering from obesity with their levels of income. This would make it possible to understand the relationship between obesity prevalence and poverty levels among different economic groups in the UK and the USA. Obesity has been defined in many different ways. It is generally described as the condition of being extremely overweight or fat but the medical definition of obesity is that it is “ a complex multifactorial chronic disease that develops as a result of the interaction between genotype and the environment” (Wells et al. , 2008, p.
1). There are many factors known to cause obesity, some of the medical and some of them environmental. The condition has been attributed to a number of medical conditions including Polycystic ovarian syndrome, genetic disorders, contraceptive drugs, antidepressants, and steroid medications (Long et al. , 2012). Although obesity is associated with all the causes indicated above, it is noted that these just precipitate the condition.
The overall agreement among medical practitioners is that obesity results from the consumption of more calories than the body can be able to burn.
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