Everyday, a billion adults around the world suffer from being overweight, and a third of them from obesity ( 2009.) Over 50 percent of all adults in the U.S. struggle with obesity ( 2009.) According to the Office of Minority Health, roughly 4 out of 5 African American women are overweight or obese. Also, African American children are 1.3 times more inclined to be overweight than all other groups studied ( 2009.)

It’s bad enough people who are overweight or obese have to put up with being called names such as “Fat slob,” “Beach whale,” “Cow,” “Fat pig” and “Porker.” They struggle every single day in every single sphere of their lives; people who are overweight or obese are grossly discriminated against at school, work, healthcare facilities and anywhere in public, really. They are even discriminated against in their own homes at times by their family and friends ( 2009.)

More specifically, studies have revealed a person’s weight can determine whether he or she is hired, promoted or fired. People who are overweight tend to be hired for positions where the public doesn’t have to make face-to-face contact with them! Even educators perceive students who are obese as more untidy, emotional and likely to have family problems. They also feel obese students are less likely to succeed in school. It’s additionally disturbingly, common for kids to be harassed about their weight and rejected by other children ( 2009.)

However, the stigma of obesity is being perpetuated by some of the media yet once, again. The latest media craze regarding weight is a person can catch obesity like he or she catches a cold; it’s contagious! According to Dr. Nikhil Durandhar’s studies on humans, 20 percent of those exposed to the human, common, cold virus (Advenovirus-3) weighed substantially more than those not infected ( 2009.) Dr. Richard Atkinson supports Durandhar’s theory and suggests creating vaccines against the virus ( 2009.)

Sitting at the other end of the table is Dr. Tam Fry, chair of the Child Growth Foundation. He alerts, “I’m skeptical because this theory has been around for 10 years, and no one has come up with a comparable study to back this up ( 2009.”) Dr. Louis Arrone, an expert and researcher in obesity from Cornell University, purports fat cells in the lab that are infected with the Advenovirus actually do suck in more fat than the fat cells that weren’t given the virus. Therefore, it’s easier for people with the virus to put on pounds, but it can’t be said it goes as far as causing obesity ( 2009.) Besides, “not all infected people will develop obesity,” reports Magdalena Pascrica, M.D., Ph. D, of the Pennington Biomedical Research Center. The virus may be a contributing factor in a small case of obese people ( 2009.)

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