Essay on Intervention for Obesity
Number of words: 1731
Obesity is a condition where one has excessive body fats that increase their risk of health problems. The condition risks an individual’s chances of contracting other diseases that might be fatal to the body. Dealing with obesity has not been easy since factors that lead to its spread are different. There is a need for the society to understand factors that contribute to increased levels of obesity in the society. First, obesity can result due to hereditary reasons as some inherit the condition since birth. For instance, if the family has a history of the condition in their lineage, there is a likelihood that it can be passed on to a young one. Second, a personal diet is a significant factor in determining the health condition of any particular individual. As such, poor dietary practices can result in one becoming obese (DiClemente, Salazar & Crosby, 2013). Third, lack of physical exercise can also make an individual obese. The research aims to devise an intervention that can be used to handle the condition through the help of two theoretical perspectives. One is diagnosed as obese when their body mass index is higher than the expected 30. When an individual takes in more calories than they can burn during daily exercises, the extra calories are stored as fat. Experts in the field are advocating for daily physical exercises that can help an individual reduce the chances of becoming obese. Equally, lifestyle choices can help determine if the condition spreads or is put under control. If each individual in the society watches what they eat and how they live generally, it can become easier to control the condition. Some foods are a contributing factor towards an increased obese condition in the society. Individuals should control their weight in a bid to avoid attracting the condition at a later age.
The health belief model is one theory that is widely applied in community-based intervention programs for health issues (Jones, Jensen, Scherr, Brown, Christy & Weaver, 2015). The theory subscribes to key principles that act as a guide to practitioners and the society in general. The one must understand the key concepts around the theory before applying it as an intervention. Many scholars have come out in defense of the theory that has had a far much effect on the health care sector. The theory can help control the rising cases of obesity globally. There is a need for the society to examine its efficacy in providing essential help in the public health sector. The theory is based on four key principles that guide practitioners. It is important to discuss all the assertions and relate concepts to prevention of obesity within the society. The four key principles include susceptibility, severity, benefits of action, and barriers to taking action (Edberg, 2007).
Perceived susceptibility of an individual can determine whether they are ready for intervention or not. The health belief model is based on the principle that if the society or a particular individual is susceptible to a certain issue, they can get motivated to do something about it. It is evident that the framework highly regards personal decision and action as a way of handling social problems in the community. The public health sector must make the society aware of any risks that they are facing ion contracting a specific disease. As such, the theory subscribes to people knowing that they are at potential risks before they find ways of controlling their behavior.
Second, the perceived severity of the condition can make the society rise and say not to issues such as obesity. When one is susceptible to a particular issue, there is a need for them to assess the potential severity of the risk that is imminent. As such, the health belief model asserts to the idea that when a matter is associated with severe consequences, the community is more likely to respond. The society should be made aware of the potential severity of the risks associated with widespread obesity. The health belief model attributes to severity of an issue as a wakeup call for many in the society.
Third, the model incorporates the benefits of action in its framework in a bid to provide a sustainable intervention program. Benefits of action represent positive implications that are associated with an individual applying a measure. For instance, if an intervention advocates for obesity control, it is an individual who will make personal decisions considering all the risks associated and benefits attached. As such, it is critical the every individual understands the advantage associated with a specific action in their life. The health belief model can help the public sector control the cases of obesity that are ever rising.
The theory also assesses perceived barriers to one achieving their set goals regarding a health issue in the community. According to assertions that are drawn from the theory, barriers to taking action can help one assess the ability and capability of embracing the intervention in place. For instance, if the intervention requires one to do exercises thrice a day to prevent obesity, factors such as job engagements can be a barrier as one will have to go to work. It is the role of the health belief model to assess barriers to action and prevent them in advance.
Interventions have effects in the society, and it is the interest of the report to unearth practice implications for using the health belief model and social network theory in solving health problems. The application of the HBM theory requires a comprehensive understanding of the scope of practice implications. The author of the article notes, “…the HBM is known as a value expectancy model, which basically refers to the assumption that people will engage in healthy behavior if 1) they value the outcome (being healthy) related to the behavior, and 2) they think that the behavior is likely to result in that outcome”. The first practice implication that is associated with the theory is behavioral change (Edberg, 2007). The principles of the health belief model are based on the personal decisions that are made towards a particular matter. There is a need for individuals to start practicing alternative ways that can see them reduce the chances of becoming obese in life. For instance, one might be required to change their feeding habits with a view of keeping fit. First, its application is associated with a behavioral change of an individual and a population at large. Second, there will be a need to apply inclusivity for better results regarding the topic of discussion. As such, every individual in the society is allowed to participate and give their views on obesity.
Third, the intervention requires that one applies mixed research methods in their bid to find a lasting solution. Mixed studies, in this case, attribute to qualitative and quantitative approaches to research, which can prove helpful in understanding various concepts surrounding the phenomenon (Edberg, 2007). Another key practice implication of the theory is that it will lead to a general shift in the way people treat matters to do with health in the society (Salari & Filus, 2017). Lastly, the application of the theory would imply that an initiative to train and educate community members on simple ways to control obesity must be implemented. Implementation of such a program would have financial implications on the government and society in general.
Social networks are contributing lately to the health sector, and there is a need to understand the role that they play in reducing the spread of obesity (Smith & Christakis, 2008). Social media use has become a widespread fact, and using it appropriately can spearhead campaigns against the spread of obesity. On the other hand, it is only fair that the research examines the practice implications that the use of social networks has on the health of an individual. Increased use of social media implies high internet activity for the community, a factor that has a cost attached. Second, the use of social networks can lead to increased spread of obese conditions across the world. As research conducted notes, “…obesity can spread through social networks in a manner reminiscent of an infectious disease or a fad—a kind of person-to-person contagion of a bio-behavioral trait.” Third, social networks have created a platform where many people in the world can rally a campaign against the spread of obesity (Smith & Christakis, 2008). As such, online activities will increase within members of the society if the social network theory is used as an intervention for obesity. Fourth, more discussions regarding obesity, causes, and how it can be controlled will emerge on online platforms. Lastly, there is a need for authorities to come up with legislation that can govern the use of social networks in the healthcare sector. As such, the two theories can serve as an appropriate intervention program for the community to control obesity.
In conclusion, it is important to consider applying the HBM theory and the social network perspectives to handle health problems that emerge within the society. Also, assessing the readiness of the community to embrace change in the said sector is a significant factor in implementing sustainable policies. The role of culture in the spread of obesity globally is a matter that has elicited endless arguments. As such, the report tries to examine health as a discipline by applying to critical theories. The society should be ready for changes, which can be realized by inclusive participation in a bid to ensure sustainability.
Arroyo-Johnson, C., & Mincey, K. D. (2016). Obesity epidemiology worldwide. Gastroenterology Clinics, 45(4), 571-579.
DiClemente, R. J., Salazar, L. F., & Crosby, R. A. (2013). Health behavior theory for public health: Principles, foundations, and applications. Jones & Bartlett Publishers.
Edberg, M. (2007). Individual health behavior theories. Essential of Health Behavior, 35-49.
Jones, C. L., Jensen, J. D., Scherr, C. L., Brown, N. R., Christy, K., & Weaver, J. (2015). The health belief model as an explanatory framework in communication research: Exploring parallel, serial, and moderated mediation. Health communication, 30(6), 566-576.
Salari, R., & Filus, A. (2017). Using the health belief model to explain mothers’ and fathers’ intention to participate in universal parenting programs. Prevention Science, 18(1), 83-94.
Smith, K. P., & Christakis, N. A. (2008). Social networks and health. Annu. Rev. Sociol, 34, 405-429.