Is Globalization Causing Obesity Worldwide?

We all have come across this term ‘globalization’ several times in our life. Some say it’s doing good to the world, while others argue in the against. The laparoscopic obesity surgeon says, it actually favors obesity. Let’s understand, what globalization is and how it plays a role in global obesity.

Obesity - ILS Bariatric Surgery

So, what is globalization?

The intra and inter spread of technology, knowledge and capital among countries is called globalization. Almost every country is affected by culture, technologies and knowledge of other leading countries. The globalization has now extended up to health, treatment, education, fashion and even lifestyle. This global phenomenon has done both good and bad, particularly for health.

The good impacts of globalization – it has uplifted several people out of poverty by providing employment, thus reduced hunger, malnutrition and protection from infectious diseases. Overall, it has improved the quality of life.

The negative effects of globalization – the improved quality of life, access to junk food and advertisements in turn had increased the waistline of majority of people especially in the developing countries such as China and India.

The role of globalization in fattening the world

When an individual is considered, he/she gains weight mostly due to excessive consumption of fatty food and lack of physical exercise. But when we consider the big picture, the environment (especially food and activity) in which he/she lives, play an important role as well. It comprises of the following factors, primarily-

Food environment “influences what a person will eat”- what food is available at what cost, along with the how much influence has it on minds due to its marketing.

Built environment “influences how active a person will be”-the surrounding landscape, transportation and safety for carrying out physical activities.

Reach of technology “influences what choices a person will make”- the lifestyle, and its accessories such as TV, cars and home-delivery services that affect everyday activities.

Doctors who perform laparoscopic obesity surgery says, before globalization made its leap, people usually used to consume local and seasonal food and fruit, usually whole cereals and grains. After globalization, barriers between nations almost faded and several fast food companies of one nation introduced their chain of food hubs in various part of the world and comparatively at affordable price as well. These foods are usually highly processed and contains considerably more fat.

Obesity

After a few decades, the developing nations began to face another threat along with malnutrition, namely obesity. It is quite strange for both these extreme nutritional abnormalities to co-exist. In recent times, the global count of obesity is actually higher than that of malnutrition. With about one third of global population counting as either overweight or obese.