The United States has the highest number of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations of COVID-19 patients, and COVID-19 deaths in the world (WHO, 2020). It also has the highest rate of obesity in the world with approximately 42.4% of its population falling into that category in a 2017-18 study (NCHS, 2020). According to findings thus far, obesity is one of the strongest risk factors for more severe COVID-19 symptoms and need for hospitalization. “A report on 4103 patients with COVID-19 disease in New York City found that the most important clinical features leading to hospital admission were age>65 years and obesity itself, more than hypertension, diabetes or cardiovascular disease” (Finer, Garnett, & Bruun, 2020, p. 1).
Based on what you have learned from the required readings this week and last week, why do you think our rates for obesity and COVID-19 are so high in the United States and what can be done to lower our risk in future pandemics? What role can psychologists play in that effort?
Read over the grading rubric for discussions before posting. Post your initial response by Wednesday. You must make a minimum of three substantive responses to other posts on two separate days of the learning week.
Finer, N., Garnett, S. P., & Bruun, J. M. (2020). Editorial: COVID-19 and obesity. Clinical Obesity, 10, 1-2. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7267455/pdf/COB-10-na.pdf
National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). (2020, February). NCHS data brief: Prevalence of obesity and severe obesity among adults, United States, 2017-2018. Hyattsville, MD: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db360-h.pdf
World Health Organization (WHO). (2020, June 13). Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation report 145. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/situation-reports/20200613-covid-19-sitrep-145.pdf?sfvrsn=bb7c1dc9_2