Most Used Tips On How To Choose The Best Steak

The steak. Almost a staple in our diets. However, not all steaks are created equal, there are those delicious steaks, and then there are the godly tasting steaks. Knowing the subtle differences can me...

News Company - avatar News Company

3 Tips for Improving Your Physical Fitness, When You're Starting from a Pretty Bad Place

Fitness is one of the most important things in life for overall health and wellness – and maintaining a regular fitness routine has all sorts of potential benefits, ranging from better medical outco...

News Company - avatar News Company

Top 5 Events to Enjoy in the United Kingdom Every Year

The United Kingdom as any country holds numerous engaging festivals throughout the year. What makes the UK offer to stand out from the rest is their exciting travel landmarks and cities that nearly ...

Goran Kezić - avatar Goran Kezić

Friday essay: YouTube apologies and reality TV revelations - the rise of the public confession

A little over a year ago, former Australian cricket captain Steve Smith made a tearful confession and apology to the public, having been banned from cricket for 12 months for ball tampering. Smith&rsq...

Kate Douglas, Professor, Flinders University - avatar Kate Douglas, Professor, Flinders University

Population DNA testing for disease risk is coming. Here are five things to know

Screening millions of healthy people for their risk of disease can be cost-effective. But it raises ethical and regulatory concerns.from www.shutterstock.comDNA testing to predict disease risk has the...

Paul Lacaze, Head, Public Health Genomics Program, Monash University - avatar Paul Lacaze, Head, Public Health Genomics Program, Monash University

Why Sydney residents use 30% more water per day than Melburnians

Melbourne's water supplies are running low after years of drought.shutterstockThis week Melbourne’s water storage dropped below 50%, a sign of the prolonged and deepening drought gripping easter...

Ian Wright, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science, Western Sydney University - avatar Ian Wright, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science, Western Sydney University

From gun control to HIV: six ingredients of successful public policy

Australia’s national policy response to HIV/AIDS has been lauded as one of the best in the world.ShutterstockIn the lead up to the recent federal election, there was plenty of negative rhetoric ...

Joannah Luetjens, PhD Candidate, Utrecht University - avatar Joannah Luetjens, PhD Candidate, Utrecht University

How the dangerous evolution of Pakistan’s national security state threatens domestic stability

Protests followed the terrorist attack that killed more than 40 Indian military personnel in the disputed state of Jammu and Kashmir. AAP/Jaipal Singh, CC BY-NDIn February, a terrorist attack by Jaysh...

Robert G. Patman, Professor of International Relations, University of Otago - avatar Robert G. Patman, Professor of International Relations, University of Otago

Taming wild cities: the tall buildings of Australia show why we need strong design guidelines

Towering canyons of concrete and glass are an increasingly dominant feature of fast-growing cities like Melbourne.ymgerman/ShutterstockPrivate enterprise has shaped the skylines of Australia’s c...

Timothy Moore, PhD Candidate, Melbourne School of Design, Monash University - avatar Timothy Moore, PhD Candidate, Melbourne School of Design, Monash University

Let them play! Kids need freedom from play restrictions to develop

Playing in nature improves children's learning, social and emotional skills.MI PHAM/unsplashYou may have heard of play. It’s that thing children do – the diverse range of unstructured, spo...

Brendon Hyndman, Senior Lecturer and Course Director (Postgraduate Education courses), Charles Sturt University - avatar Brendon Hyndman, Senior Lecturer and Course Director (Postgraduate Education courses), Charles Sturt University

If you think less immigration will solve Australia's problems, you're wrong; but neither will more

More by luck than design, recent recent levels of immigration seem to be in a 'goldilocks zone' that balances economic, social and environmental objectives.www.shutterstock.comAre we letting too many ...

Cameron Allen, Researcher, UNSW - avatar Cameron Allen, Researcher, UNSW

Gamers use machine learning to navigate complex video games – but it's not free

Playing Dota 2? You can do better with a little help from machine learning.Shutterstock/hkhtt hj Some of the world’s most popular video games track your activity as you play – but they&rsq...

Ben Egliston, PhD candidate in Media and Communications, University of Sydney - avatar Ben Egliston, PhD candidate in Media and Communications, University of Sydney

Grattan on Friday: Shocked Labor moves on – but to what policy destination?

Bill Shorten has said he likes doing the family shopping, nevertheless Tuesday’s front page picture in The Australian did capture the savagery of changing political fortunes. There was Shorten, ...

Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra - avatar Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra

Narendra Modi has won the largest election in the world. What will this mean for India?

Narendra Modi's image was ubiquitous on the campaign trail – a sign of how much Indians have gravitated toward his cult of personality and nationalist rhetoric.Harish Tyagi/AAP The resounding vi...

Amitabh Mattoo, Honorary Professor of International Relations, University of Melbourne - avatar Amitabh Mattoo, Honorary Professor of International Relations, University of Melbourne

It is an undeniable truth that prevention is always better than cure. Vaccinations have near eradiated polio and small pox, hygiene caused the dramatic disappearance of typhoid and cholera and just being generally healthier has resulted in a steady decline in TB. And at some point in the future HIV will ultimately be prevented through safer sex rather than medication and hopefully someone will find a way to prevent the spread of Ebola.

But right now we live in a world where many people are obese and the time for prevention for these people has passed. So we need a cure. The recent announcement that up to 2m people will receive weight loss surgery on the NHS indicates that obesity surgery could well be it. NHS watchdog NICE wants more people with type 2 diabetes to get access gastric band or bypass operations.

But are we ready for this last resort? Is surgery really the right way forward? And is it a good use of public money?

A last resort

In an ideal world people would eat less, do more and stay a healthy weight. Grab bags, takeaways, fizzy drinks and fast food would never have been invented and well lit cycle paths and wide pavements would make getting in the car a treat reserved for special occasions. But those days are gone and today’s world makes it so hard to eat less and so easy to do nothing that even with the greatest will in the world many people struggle with their weight.

Until we all have an epiphany and realise something has to change or governments grab the food industry and town planners by the horns and scream “enough’s enough”, prevention in traditional sense cannot help. We are at the last resort and cure has to be the way forward. But does it have to be surgery?

Is surgery the only option?

imageAdjustable gastric band.JohnnyMrNinja, CC BY-NC-SA

I teach and write about how obesity is a product of eating and exercise – in other words behaviour. I also teach about the many strategies that psychologists use to change behaviour ranging from complex interventions of CBT or relapse prevention to simple tricks of the trade such as planning, imagery and waiting for that “teachable moment” when someone is just more open to change.

And in my ideal world not only would people stay thin, these many strategies would work on those few that didn’t. But in the main this is just that – an ideal. And although we know that some people can lose weight using our tricks of the trade, the vast majority put it back on again and some end up fatter than they were in first place.

With this failure comes depression, low self esteem, self blame and a tendency to seek solace in food, the very cause of the problem. So much as I hope that one day psychology will come into its own with obesity as it has done in many other areas of health, I concede that now, in this non-ideal world, surgery is the best way to treat obesity.

A good use of public money?

When the government suggested paying people to lose weight the overwhelming response was “It’s not fair!” Obesity is seen as a self inflicted problem so surely it is up to the people themselves to make things better? “They don’t deserve public money,” was the message from that. And that was just about small financial incentives.

But now they are going have a free operation on the NHS costing up to £6,000. Surely this is just wrong? And if prevention is always better than cure and cures cost so much, maybe we should give up on those currently obese and just focus on prevention for the future?

But given the cost to the NHS of treating the health issues related to obesity is reckoned to cost the UK economy about £47bn a year – second only to issues related to smoking – it gives the surgery option a bit more context. According to some number crunching by Channel 4 News presenter Cathy Newman:

The government spends £638m a year on obesity prevention, but the taxpayer coughs up £6bn annually on medical conditions related to obesity, and a further £10bn on diabetes.

“Wow,” she says. And she isn’t wrong.

Obesity surgery is not only a cure but it is also a very successful form of prevention. People with obesity are far more prone to diabetes with all its associated vision, circulatory and nervous system problems. They are also more likely to need hip and knee replacements, develop certain cancers and have heart disease. All of which costs money – and that money comes from the NHS. And then on top of this, obese parents are more like to have obese children and pass on ill effects to children, even when they are still in the womb storing up the same problems for future generations. So curing their weight with surgery, actually prevents a catalogue of problems in the future.

Prevention is always better than cure. And obesity surgery is a last resort for a problem that so far has no other solution. But it is also prevention if you think about it, and when the problems it prevents carry way on into the future, it begins to look like that £6,000 is well spent.

image

Jane Ogden does not work for, consult to, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has no relevant affiliations.

Read more http://theconversation.com/free-obesity-surgery-on-the-nhs-is-worth-the-money-34818