We’ve all heard it. Infomercials touting the latest gadget to prepare healthier food, to campaigns in communities to fight the “obesity epidemic. ” You can’t escape. Obesity is public enemy number one.
As a renal nurse, I am well acquainted with how most of the dialysis population found their way to their present circumstance. In short–diabetes and hypertension, and usually a combination thereof. I’ve seen patients (at times in less than a year) go from losing a toe, to a foot, and eventually become a BKA (below the knee amputee). So now, they contend with the complications of renal failure, AND face life without use of a limb.
For this reason and many others, I traded my uniform for workout gear.
A major part of nursing is education, as well as preventative care. I have worked as a dialysis educator, classroom instructor, and now I see myself in the preventative arena. It may not be the way most of my colleagues see prevention. But we all play on the same team; just with different approaches.
Every type of disease wreaks havoc in its own way. However, I wonder how obesity fits in. Yes, it has far-reaching implications–but does it really fit the description of a disease? Maybe. Though I have a few questions. How would this classification work anyway? Do we assign stages to it–like renal failure or cancer? How would insurance companies handle this? Would they? Should it be considered a pre-existing condition if you begin/change insurance? Will there be specialists in this field? Treatment and patient compliance face dilemmas all their own on this one.
Take a look at http://mercola.com. “Why Branding Obesity as a Disease is a step in the WRONG direction.” The article is dated July 6, 2013. It has interesting perspectives on who benefits by calling this weighty issue a disease.
In the meantime, consider who benefits by regular exercise, proper nutrition, and a reform in habit. I can give you one hint–it’s not those who would benefit from calling obesity a disease.
All for now. Keep up and keep at it.
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