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iConcept Journal of Emerging Issues in Medical Diagnosis and Treatment
Title
iConcept Journal of Emerging Issues in Medical Diagnosis and Treatment
Editor
Eugenia Giannopoulou
ISSN
2309-3528
Publisher
iConcept Press

iConcept Journal of Emerging Issues in Medical Diagnosis and Treatment

Trends of Obesity Epidemic and its Socio-cultural Dimensions in Africa: Implications for Health Systems and Environmental Interventions

by Olufunke O. Arojo and Kayode O. Osungbade

Volume: 2 (2013); Issue: 7

Abstract

Obesity is now commonly seen in developing countries, which are characterized by weak health systems to address the challenges brought about by obesity and its consequences. Obesity and overweight are the fifth leading risk for global deaths. At least 2.8 million adults die each year as a result of being obese or overweight. In most African countries, social and cultural perceptions of obesity are common as it is seen as a symbol of wealth, autonomy, attractiveness, happiness, beauty and success. In addition, some attributed ‘thinness’ to an underlying health problem such as HIV and AIDS. These misconceptions about obesity could result in a shift in dietary intakes and activity patterns to that of high fat intakes with lower physical activity. It is also known that environmental factors exert a major influence on dietary behavior and physical activity among Africans. Multi-level, multi-sectoral and context-appropriate health and environmental interventions are suggested to halt obesity epidemic in Africa.

Author Details

Olufunke O. Arojo
Department of Sociology, University of Ibadan, Nigeria, Nigeria
Kayode O. Osungbade
Department of Health Policy and Management, University of Ibadan, Nigeria, Nigeria

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