More than two thirds of those residing in America are overweight by the time they hit adulthood. With that being over 68% of the United States population, a professor at La Salle is fighting to take a stance against obesity in America.
Dr. Edie Goldbachen, a professor who teaches in the doctoral program in the department of Psychology at La Salle stresses the importance of understanding, preventing,and treating weight related difficulties.
According to Dr. Goldbachen, one of the key contributing factors to obesity is the constant decrease in physical activity.
“Now imagine that you are trying to promote physical activity for children or adults, but the child lives in a impoverished neighborhood with no sidewalks and a lot of community violence and is a afraid to leave their house. They don’t have enough money to go to a gym and their schools have eliminated physical activity so now there are these characteristics of this built environment that are going to make it more difficult for the individual to engage in more physical activity,” Dr. Goldbachen said .
Other factors that play a huge role in obesity in America are portion sizes and the high cost of healthier foods.
After comparing the prices of over 370 foods found in supermarkets, researchers from the University of Washington found not only that food with high levels of saturated fats was cheaper, but also that the prices of these foods are less likely to raise due to inflation.
As an attempt to change the number of those with obesity in America, Dr. Goldbachen uses a technique called stimulus control to help people work on eating habits.
With stimulus control, researchers and nutritionist work to teach individuals how to pay attention to things that we identify in the environment and how they may alter eating habits to avoid mental problems that may cause unhealthy eating.
To defeat obesity in America , we must first understand environmental issues that controls how we eat.