Obesity: Set-Point and Positive Incentive Models

Free «Obesity: Set-Point and Positive Incentive Models» Essay Sample

Obesity can be described as being among the most prevalent chronic illnesses in the United States. It is attributed to outcomes such as disabilities, death, and even increased health care costs. Due to the enormous number of people who have the obesity, this disease has continually affected and strained the U.S. health care sector. Due to these attributes that are related to the illness, it is crucial to understand the nature of the disease and whether the set-point and the positive incentive models can properly explain the concept of obesity.

Scientifically obesity is defined as having excess adipose tissue in the body. The set-point model explains that weight is regulated around a certain set point, which can also be described as a kind of internal regulator. In incidences where the fat in an individual’s body rises or falls, there are some mechanisms triggered that ensure that the levels of fat return to the set point. These mechanisms are psychological or physiological in nature. In contrast, the positive incentive theory postulates that the positive reinforcements of eating have some crucial outcomes. Therefore, this model supports the fact that people must overeat to be obese.

Looking at the two theories it becomes clear that they are adequate since they explain the concept of obesity and body mechanisms that regulate the body fat from accumulating or depleting. The set point has been helpful in explaining the role of physiological and psychological mechanism in the body that help to ensure that the body fat is kept in check. There are explanations like the fact that fat in the body produces leptin that acts as a signaling factor for the hypothalamus to regulate the amount of body fat. Research that has been done on the concept of overeating and starvation has concluded the importance of the concept of the set point. The major postulate that has been discovered is the fact that a deviation in eating or starvation is achieved with much difficulty. The set-point theory is efficient in this case since it explains that people who follow diets cannot easily lose weight because the body mechanisms fight against  the loss of fats while those who have low fats experience increased hunger. This mechanism of the body also ensures that the person eats to raise the fat level. Even though the set-point model does not cover concepts like taste and learning, it is still efficient since it covers the mechanisms that ensure that body fats are regulated efficiently.

Furthermore, the positive incentive model can also be seen as being effective in the description and analysis of obesity as it covers concepts like food availability and personal experiences with food, among others. Moreover, the theory explains that the availability of abundant food supply may be considered a decisive factor, but it is not enough to cause obesity in an individual. The two theories have been able to cover the obesity topic from different angles, which proves the fact that they are efficient in the analysis of obesity.

In conclusion, obesity is a disease that has been attributed to many negative outcomes in the United States, particularly in the health care sector of the country. Research has been conducted into the issue to understand the nature of the illness. There are some theories that have been postulated to ensure that the obesity concept is properly understood. From the analysis of the set-point theory and the positive incentive theory, it has become clear that both are effective and efficient methods of ensuring that the concept of obesity is properly covered. Though the set-point theory does not cover some concepts, it is still crucial in the analysis of obesity.