There is a new generation of bar hoppers in this town, but they're not searching for the perfect martini. “Their prey is the silken flesh of fresh raw fish, served in thinly sliced slivers placed lovingly atop little mounds of vinegared rice. It's a traditional Japanese delicacy called sushi, dispensed by highly trained chefs to clients across shiny pine counters. To the uninitiated, the very thought of raw fish can be distressing, but these days, savvy Southern Californians--and others everywhere across the country--just can't seem to get enough of it...the sushi bar is a great place to make new friends...Sushi is booming right now from Los Angeles to Charlotte.” Veteran chef Ken Seusa. invented the California roll, a crab, avocado and cucumber medley wrapped in rice and seaweed and one of the most popular items at any sushi bar. Mrs. Wade has several theories as to why sushi--and its riceless, straight-raw-fish companion, sashimi--have become so popular. ' Somehow or other Americans think Japanese cuisine is much more natural and dietetic than French, Italian or American cooking.” Will this trend help American population shed decades of bad habits, overeating and chronic diseases?
In 2000, the Center for Disease Control estimated the total cost of obesity in the United States at $117 billion. By 2020, obesity problems will consume more than one-fifth of health care costs in the country. The health cost of obesity in the United States is as high as $147 billion annually, based on a new study from (RTI) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The proportion of all annual medical costs that are due to obesity increased from 6.5 percent in 1998 to 9.1 percent in 2006. This total includes payment by Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurers, and includes prescription drug spending. Overall, persons who are obese spent $1,429 (42 percent) more for medical care in 2006 than did normal weight people.
The hidden cost of obesity: gastric surgery. Medicare, the government’s insurance for people who are over age 65 or disabled, picks up the tab for health care in other words any taxpaying American has a stake in the care provided to obese patients. How big is the tab? According to a patient Medicare summary notice, in the two months, the government paid doctors $4,662.08. That does not count costs of drugs or hospital visits.
Obesity Leads to chronic diseases (CDC=center for disease control) “Obesity is a risk for a number of chronic diseases, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and some cancers,” With the rates of obesity climbing, the cost of treating obesity and obesity-related diseases will continue to grow. The medical fields started rising flags not long time ago when they start looking at the fast growing number of children and young adults with diabetes, heart condition, blood pressure problems and respiratory issues that are more common in the elder population.
Exercise and nutrition: Physical education and activities became optional in schools and almost disappeared from young adult’s life since the new suburban lifestyle, computer technologies and multitude of cars and buses to commute.
While America became more industrialized, so did its kitchens and food supply. The genetic engineered foods, the imported foods (versus local grown), the canned and frozen ( versus fresh) the less expensive and the fast food made American people to rank first in the list of fat/ obese people in the world.
The Education factor with regards to the Nutrition and Health is very important and can be found in a lot of program of study, in published articles and a lot of books, available nationwide and television programs that emphasis good health. The Department of Agriculture and Department of health and Human Service recommended dietary guidelines explaining how much food Americans should consume each day. Locally, public health agencies, health departments in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture offer programs such as Women, Infants and Children (WIC) food supplementation program that provides nutritious foods and education to mothers and nutritional food options and safe area in which to exercise.
Reversing this epidemic requires a versatile and coordinated approach that uses policy and environmental change to transform communities into places that support and promote healthy lifestyle choices for all people. Community and individual gardens are a great way of educating individuals about the importance of eating fresh produce. Most Asian people tend to favor the fruits of their labor and some experience and acquire a taste for new fruits or vegetables just because they can grow them; it makes people happy and gives a feeling of satisfaction, especially when they can share, produce and experience with their neighbors.
Unfortunately, most of the entire educational sector has been largely ineffective at preventing weight gain.
Marketing behavioral changeAccording to RAND Corporation researcher Deborah Cohen, Eating is influenced more by environmental factors than by conscious choice.
Studies have shown that: people served larger portions eat more food, regardless of other factors; the amount of food consumed increases as the effort to eat it decreases; people eat more when sharing meals with others; the larger the group, the more each person will consume; once people begin eating, they usually continue until the food is gone or until some other external occurrence changes the situation.
If we view eating as an automatic behavior, we should adopt a new response to the obesity epidemic. Instead of educational or motivational approaches to reduce consumption, we should decrease the accessibility, visibility, and quantity of foods to which people are exposed and reduce environmental cues that encourage eating. The Asians restaurants, most of whom are buffet-style, have miles of vegetables in their bars. I noticed a lot of seafood, fruits and less sugary deserts.
The news and entertainment media can play a unique part in addressing the problem of obesity. Through their programs they can teach in a positive and fun way for all levels of ages, while the benefits of healthy eating habits can be emphasize
Recognizing the large health and economic burden of obesity, CDC has issued its first comprehensive set of evidence-based recommendations to help communities tackle the problem of obesity through programs and policies that promote healthy eating and physical activity. Communities should support locating schools within easy walking distance of residential areas and should improve availability of affordable healthier food and beverage choices.
Europe and United State institutions have become increasingly involved in regulating and supporting the organic sector. Reflecting the multiple goals for organic farming and for agricultural policy, a varied and complex range of policy measures have been developed and implemented to support the organic sector. However, balancing consumer market goals and balancing institutional and private stakeholder interests in the organic sector present particular challenges for policy-making. The key issue of the organic farming policy has to consider two different dimensions of policy development – the dimension of policies and the dimension of politics.
For questions, comments of information email to: Roxanna@fnhealthassist.org
Printed in Asian Herald ,2011.