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National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

It is apparent that the issue of nutrition and health in the United States of America has gained concern in recent years (Radimer et al., 2004). This is due to the fact that the growing population in the USA has increased significantly over the last decade, a factor that raises concern on the need to provide the public with adequate nutrition and health services. According to the results produced by National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), there emerges a major dilemma on how to boost the status of health and nutrition among adults and children in the US (Khan, 2011). For instance, findings have shown that there has been an increase in prevalence for major diseases such as diabetes and obesity since the 1970s due to poor health and nutrition (Radimer et al., 2004). By considering the factors affecting improvement on health and nutritional issues, NHANES highlights that epidemiological measures should be taken in order to establish solid services, policies, and programs in order to provide adequate health services to the population.

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From a careful review of history, 35% of adults within the age range of 18-60 years have poor nutritional routines making them prevalent to health challenges such as diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular diseases (Medical Writers, 2003). For instance, recent survey results taken in 2007 revealed that approximately 5% of adults take mineral supplements to improve their diet (Khan, 2011). More than 65% of women and 45% of men suffer from foodborne illness due to poor diet choices and unhealthy lifestyles (Ogden, Carroll & Curtin, 2010). The latter situation has increased the morbidity rate in the United States by 17% over the past five years. Statistical analysis has shown that more than 325,000 cases of ill health have been reported since 2007 (Story, Kaphingst & Robinson-O’Brien, 2008). It is important to note that out of the cases of ill-health reported, over 47% comprises of adults and children who are black-American. Needless to say, more than 50 percent of children and adults living in urban areas in the USA have been susceptible to major illnesses due to poor diet and lack of physical exercise (Exworthy & Washington, 2006).

It is reasonably beyond doubt that effective intervention measures should be implemented to ensure that epidemic issues related to poor nutrition and health get decimated having considered the above information. This implies that the health and nutrition sector in the US needs to raise awareness and establish policies that will foster proper and healthy lifestyle trends for the population. Empirical research conducted by Radimer et al (2004) has revealed that numerous public health intervention measures have been implemented in order to reverse the morbidity trend. For example, Emingway et al (2004) note that the government has established awareness programs that are meant to create consciousness to the public on issues related to healthy living and nutrition. Concerted efforts have been directed on public campaigns against poor living lifestyles such as drug abuse, sedentary lifestyle, and poor dieting (McCarthy, 2000). Moreover, the government has also established solid heath policies for the public to ensure that they access vital services. Health programs have also boosted and expanded the health knowledge of the public. Consequently, since 2010, the morbidity level has significantly reduced by 12% whereby 63% of adults and 42% of children have managed to access healthcare services and proper nutrition (Ogden, Carroll & Curtin, 2010).

References

Emingway, S et al. (2004). Nurse prescribing in mental health care: What can the USA teach us? Nurse Prescriber, 1(4), 1-6.

Exworthy, M. & Washington, A. (2006). Organizational strategies to tackle health-care disparities in the USA. Health Services Management Research, 19(1), 44-51.

Khan, A. (2011). Public health preparedness and response in the USA since 9/11: A national health security imperative. The Lancet, 378(9794), 953-956.

McCarthy, M. (2000). Will health issues force compromise in a divided USA? The Lancet, 356(9243), 1744-1745.

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Medical Writers. (2003). Milliman USA issues new report on disease management; survey reveals key strategies in the planning of wellness programs. Business Wire, 1(1):1-3.

Ogden, L., Carroll,D. & Curtin, L.R. (2010). Prevalence of high body mass index in US children and adolescents, 2007–2008. JAMA, 303(3):242-249.

Radimer, K et al. (2004). Dietary supplement use by US adults: Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1999–2000. Am Journal of Epidemiology, 160(1):339-349.

Story, M., Kaphingst, M. & Robinson-O’Brien, R. (2008). Creating healthy food and eating environments: Policy and environmental approaches. Annual Rev Public Health, 29:253-272.

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