The Governmental Obesity Treatments Paper (Pt 1)

Sorry for the EXTREMELY boring sounding title but I promise it is the only boring part of this post, because if what is written below doesn’t open your eyes up to how ignorant some people (specifically politicians) are of the facts surrounding obesity, then I don’t believe anything will!

Last week I was fortunate enough to come into passion of the Governments latest Obesity Treatments Paper. This is a paper by the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology has been written as a study into the benefits of Obesity Treatment. When I say written as a study, they have basically just collated facts similar to the ones I have been writing about since I started this blog in January and written them in a manner in which a Member of Parliament could understand.

Now when I say “written so a Member of Parliament could understand” I really should say “written so that a small child could understand”

I am absolutely amazed that there could possible be a Politician on this Green and Sceptred Isle on which we live that does not actually know what obesity is, but judging by the opening remarks on the paper, it would appear there are a few at least.

The description that starts the article is basic to say the least:

Obesity is where a person has an extreme excess of body fat to the extent that their health may be adversely affected. It is caused by an imbalance between energy consumed in the diet and energy used, which is influenced by genetic, cultural and environmental factors. Body mass index (BMI), calculated from a person’s weight and height, is used as a reliable indicator of body fatness for most individuals. In the UK, two-thirds of adults are overweight or obese, a quarter are obese and 2.5% or 1.3 million people are morbidly obese (BMI 40+ kg/m2).2 Among children, obesity prevalence doubles between reception and year 6 from 10% to 20%.3

Like I say, apart from the numbers at the end, all very simple stuff.

It then goes on to discuss the health issues of Obesity saying that a quarter of adults in the UK are clinically Obese and therefore are at an increased rick of developing chronic diseases. Increasingly drug and surgical treatments are being employed as opposed to diet and exercise for people who find it difficult to adhere to lifestyle changes. Obesity as you know causes problems such as breathlessness, joint and back pain, tiredness, low self-esteem and a lack of motivation. It can also lead to increased risk of developing many long-term conditions such as Diabetes, stroke, cardiovascular disease, certain types cancer, infertility, liver disease and osteoarthritis. It also states (and this is a new statistic to me) that people of Asian, African or Caribbean descent are at a higher risk of developing these conditions associated with Obesity at a lower BMI than White Europeans. Finally the report states that Morbid Obesity is as equivalent a risk to health as the effects of lifelong smoking, shortening life expectancy by eight to ten years.

It discusses the demographics of Obesity. Everyone likes a pigeonhole that they can put people into and this paper is no different basically stating that in rich countries the poor are more prone to Obesity and in poor countries, the rich are more prone. The Obesity age group is no surprise peaking between 45 and 75 years of age. The time when people might have ailments, have been forced to endure weight gaining treatments for longer, are slowing down in life and therefore more prone to putting on weight or are simply in some cases more able to afford the hit fat, high carb and high sugar foods which to my mind are one of the root causes of the epidemic. It goes on to say that Obesity levels are highest among black African and Bangladeshi women and lowest amongst Chinese men and women. Unsurprisingly, the levels are also high amongst people with disabilities (especially learning disabilities), people with mental health issues (psychiatric drugs at fault here) and victims of abuse.

As the paper continues, it discusses weight management programmes where the patient follows a strict diet laid out be Weight Watchers or Slimming World or NHS run programmes, separating the patient into 4 tiers, depending on the severity of the patients issue. It ranges from Tier 2 which is a referral into a weight loss programme, to Tier 3 where a specialist team is used to help the patient giving them access to Psychiatrists, Dieticians and other related medical professionals. The final stage is known as Tier 4 which is the easy way of say Bariatric Surgery 🙂 So all in all a sensible way to look at the issue, not escalating someone who is in no need of surgery to operating theatre or likewise not leaving someone who needs surgery languishing in the depths of a programme that is simply not tailored to the patients requirements.

-To be continued-

FOOD DIARY:Wednesday 17th June 2015

Qty Measure Food Calories (gr) Protein (gr) Carbs (gr) Fat (gr)
Breakfast  1  50gms Six Seeded Brown Batch Bread  97.8 5.7  16  4
 1  Large  Scrambled Egg  82  7.8  8  6
Lunch  1 200gms  Heinz Baked Beans  160  9.4  25.9  0.4
Dinner  1  80gms Lemongrass and Chilli Basmati Rice  72  1.3  14  2
 1  125gms  Chilli Prawns  130  18  7.6  6
Snacks  1  175mls  Phd Diet Whey Protein  91  17  2.75  1.4
 1  400mls  Tea  24  0  6  0
Totals  656.8  59.2  80.25  19.8
Water  3 500mls Fizzy Mineral Water 0 0 0 0

A bit of a light day food wise which is odd because I honestly felt like I did nothing but eat! Anyway, count the calories etc and I suppose the truth will out in the diary!

No exercise apart from a gentle walk with the dog so no reports to be made.

Tune in tomorrow for the next episode in this (far from thrilling) Parliamentary report.

‘Till tomorrow,

Stay out of the fridge

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