Obesity

In american society, medications play a huge role in biomedicine and treatment of individuals. In the context of biomedicine, many individuals with medical conditions are automatically prescribed medications when they seek treatment from a doctor, rather than first being encouraged to find natural alternatives or other types of treatment (such as talk therapy for psychiatric conditions). Many americans believe conditions can be “fixed” with medications but do not realize that there can be many harmful repercussions to over medication, such as detrimental side effects, some that can even be permanent, or over dependency on medications. Americans’ tendency to believe that medications are the answer implies that our culture seeks a quick fix for medical conditions rather than being willing to work at improving health over time or using treatments other than medications. It also shows how we as americans have become so reliant on medications for even the most minor of things, such as falling asleep.

In the advertisement below, Alli is advertised as a weight loss medication. This advertisement shows how americans as a culture highly value thinness and go to great lengths, such as taking medications for weight loss, in order to correct being overweight or to lose weight in general. This and other advertisements for Alli are also almost exclusively marketed towards women, showing that women are the ones in the US who should be preoccupied with weight loss rather than men and keeps women in a constant struggle to lose weight instead of encouraging them to be comfortable with themselves and focus on more important things. Alli is advertised as being FDA approved and works in the digestive tract, rather than in the stomach or the mind to achieve weight loss. Doctor and patient interaction is not shown in this ad, but other ads for the same product encourage individuals to consult their doctor before taking the medication. alli cardstacking

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Widad Nasser says:

    In today’s society, obesity is not socially accepted. People with obesity are socially isolated and bullied because they don’t look like what the media advertises a normal person should look like (thin and healthy). This puts more pressure on over weight individuals to loose weight. Although this may be a good thing, the American society wants the weight loss to happen very quickly. With all the advertisements making it seem like weight loss can happen so quickly, these individuals turn to weight loss pills instead of losing weight the natural way and exercising. However, what people don’t realize is that these pills have major side effects and can cause other illnesses. Also, medicine has proved that obesity results in many illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension etc. Diet pills do not solve these illnesses but instead may make them worse. Instead of advertising diet pills, media should focus on advertising exercise programs and diets to help people lose weight naturally and decreases the chances of illnesses like diabetes.

  2. Meredith Joseph says:

    Obesity is a serious medical issue that is growing in America. Our society likes to treat things as quickly as possible, especially when an illness effects ones outward appearances. If a medical issue is able to be quickly treated with a pill than most likely it will be the doctor’s and patients first choice. Obesity is a very looked down upon disease in America. Being overweight in a society where being fit and skinny is idealistic is hard to overcome and a social hit for many. For those who are dealing with obesity they should take the healthy way out and improve their whole life style not just pop some pills and hope they kick in. With the pill method some people think that is simply all that needs done, they can continue with their bad eating and exercise habits as they were before. Personally I think people with obesity should be taught how to eat healthy and exercise daily to get their weight under control naturally before they are prescribed pills to help them lose weight. Than once they get a healthy life style down the medication will just be an aid in the process for losing weight. Of course if serious measures are needed and pills are the only way to help person in dire need they should be used.

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