Obesity is becoming a major issue in America. Many people do not, however, seem to take it seriously and continue to eat junk food every day. The next time you drive into a fast-food outlet please consider some of the following factors.
• Over 34% of Americans suffer from Obesity and 34% are reported to be overweight.
• More than 17% of American children also suffer from obesity and this figure has increased three-fold for in the last three generations.
• More than 8 million people suffer from diabetes and yet they don’t know it. Besides, statistics also indicate that 10% of all Americans have diabetes.
It is evident that some of the major contributors to America’s health crisis are as a result of lack of eating junk food and lack of exercise. Nonetheless, Architects are closely working with medical practitioners to try and find a solution. The Chief Executive Officer of the American Institute of Architects, Robert Ivy has been on the forefront to integrate architecture and health in order to help come up with solutions to some of the problems facing the society.
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For instance, how can chronic diseases be tamed from an architectural point of view? One of the best ways of solving such a problem is through design. Architects play a big role in design and planning of our buildings and recreational facilities. Consequently, they can team up with the national health sector and come up with ways that can help reduce obesity. For example, architects can design houses or buildings which encourage exercise. They can make using staircases more attractive than using lifts.
Architect students are currently interested in courses which will teach them to design buildings which improve public health. The good news is that there are already institutions which are ready to offer such courses. For instance, the College of architecture at Texas Tech University this fall plans to roll out a new Master of Science course in architecture majoring in Design and Health. This is just one of the Universities that have taken up the initiative to use architecture to improve public health.
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) was founded in 1857 with the aim of assisting architects around the country. It has its headquarters in Washington, DC and Robert Ivy is the current CEO of the institution. Robert Ivy went to for his masters of Arts degree in architecture from Tulane University. He also attended the University of South where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English.
The American Institute of Architects currently has over 80,000 registered members. The institution is responsible for licensing all qualified architects around the country. Apart from its headquarters in Washington DC, there are 300 other chapters nationwide.