Are Fast Food Restaurants Contributing to Obesity in America?
January 13, 2014
Fast food is very enjoyable every now and then, but are we, the people of America, aware that eating it constantly will cause extremely dangerous health issues. Obesity in the United States is becoming a huge problem, especially among young children and teenagers. Many people are beginning to think fast food restaurants are greatly contributing to obesity in America.
"According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of American adults and 17% of children and adolescents from ages 2 to 19 are obese." Obesity is defined as any weight that is greater than the average weight for one's age. Before fast food restaurants were created, the range of obesity was very small. Only 9.7% of Americans fit into the obesity category in 1950, when fast food restaurants were unpopular.
There were some fast food restaurants around before 1950, but burgers were considered to be unclean or even unsafe, so they were not eaten regularly. (Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal, pg. 5)
Throughout the late 1950s, more fast food restaurants were being created, such as KFC, Pizza Hut, and Burger King. By the 1960s fast food was becoming more and more popular. In the 1970s there was a 5.2% increase in the amount of obese people in America. By 1980, the demand for fast food greatly increased. There were about 130,000 fast food restaurants in the United States by 1985. Obesity drastically arose. Almost a quarter of the American population was defined as obese. The rate of obesity had more than doubled since 1970, after more fast food restaurants were created. One out of every three Americans was considered to be obese by 1990.