TITLE

Emerging patterns in overweight and obesity in Ecuador

AUTHOR(S)
Bernstein, Adam
PUB. DATE
July 2008
SOURCE
Revista Panamericana de Salud Publica;Jul2008, Vol. 24 Issue 1, p71
SOURCE TYPE
Periodical
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Estudios epidemiológicos recientes han demostrado una elevada prevalencia de sobrepeso y obesidad en niños y adultos de Ecuador. Esto afecta a más de la mitad de la población, especialmente a las mujeres. También se ha observado una alta tasa de personas con síndrome metabólico, una enfermedad asociada con el exceso de peso que incrementa el riesgo de enfermedad cardiovascular. Esos datos indican que en Ecuador está en marcha una transición nutricional -la sustitución de dietas bajas en calorías principalmente de origen vegetal por dietas ricas encalorías con más componentes de origen animal-, en la que las dietas urbanas se componen primordialmente de grasa, azúcar y cereales refinados. Esta dieta puede explicar en parte la alta prevalencia encontrada de sobrepeso y obesidad. Las políticas internacionales que intensifican el comercio exterior y extienden el alcance de las corporaciones transnacionales de alimentos facilitan esta transición nutricional al llevar nuevos productos alimenticios a los mercados en desarrollo. Los cambios en el crecimiento de la población, la estructura por edades y la distribución de los ingresos, así como el aumento del grado de urbanización, también contribuyen a esta transición al crear grandes plazas centralizadas de consumidores. Al diseñar programas de intervención en Ecuador se deben tener en cuenta tres características de su población, economía y geografía: 1) Ecuador mantiene estrechos lazos con los Estados Unidos de América y puede ser especialmente sensible a la influencia económica, industrial y cultural de ese país; 2) la variada geografía ecuatoriana puede impedir la aplicación de programas uniformes, ya que las diferencias regionales en la densidad de carreteras y los patrones climáticos influyen en la práctica de ejercicios y la actividad física; y 3) Ecuador es el país más densamente poblado de América del Sur. Por consiguiente, y tomando en cuenta los éxitos en este campo en otros países en desarrollo, los esfuerzos en salud pública en Ecuador se pueden ver beneficiados por campañas en los medios masivos de comunicación.
ACCESSION #
37246072

 

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