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Obesity in America

  • Date Submitted: 11/12/2015 10:21 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 62.6 
  • Words: 1232
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Consumer Obesity Culture
Imagine having a conversation with a French foreign exchange student and hearing her say, “I thought all Americans were fat!” You would feel offended, right? But in reality, this is not an uncommon thought for foreigners. Many countries view America as overweight and unhealthy, and they’re not wrong. The consumer culture in America is the main cause for the obesity epidemic. Consumers need for convenience, cheap foods, and getting “more for less” all influence the weight of Americans.
Ask any American family and they will tell you that they’re always on the go. From school, work, sports teams, and extra curricular activities, families are busy throughout any ordinary day. That’s why many consumers choose fast food chains to purchase a speedy meal. The fast food industry has marketed to these busy families by showing that they can provide a stress free, quick, and tasty meal that everyone will love. Research shows that one in four people eat fast food every day (11 Facts About American Eating Habits). Americans consume about a third of their daily calories outside of the home, and fast food accounts for forty percent of those calories (American Eating Habits).
But what makes fast food so bad? First, one must think about how quickly the food is prepared. It takes minutes to get a burger, meaning that it is most likely pre-cooked; therefore it needs preservatives to keep it “fresh.” That includes high amounts of sodium. A McDonald’s Big Mac has 1,000 grams of sodium, which is forty one percent of the daily value. This doesn't include the 300 grams in a side of French fries (Fast Food Still Unhealthy). High amounts of sodium in one’s diet leads to serious health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and weight gain. Fast food is also notoriously high in trans fat. Trans fat increases risk of heart disease and high cholesterol, which can lead to stroke and heart attack (Health Risks with Fast Food). Overall, caloric intake...

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