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My Miniseries on Obesity As a Disease

Over the past weeks, I have presented a miniseries on the pros and cons of calling obesity a chronic disease. Clearly, I am convinced that the arguments in favour, carry far greater chances of effectively preventing and controlling obesity (defined as abnormal or excess body fat that impairs health) than continuing to describe obesity merely as a matter of ‘lifestyle’ or simply a &#821… Read More »

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Arguments For Calling Obesity A Disease #9: Medical Education

Next in my miniseries on the pros and cons of calling obesity a ‘disease’, I turn to the issue of medical education. From the first day in medical school, I learnt about diseases – their signs and symptoms, their definitions and classifications, their biochemistry and physiology, their prognosis and treatments. Any medical graduate will happily recite the role and function of ADH… Read More »

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Arguments For Calling Obesity A Disease #8: Can Reduce Stigma

Next, in this miniseries on arguments for and against calling obesity a disease, I turn to the issue of stigma. One of the biggest arguments against calling obesity, is the fear that doing so can increase stigma against people living with obesity. This is nonsense, because I do not think it is at all possible for anything to make stigma and the discrimination of people living with obesity worse th… Read More »

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Arguments For Calling Obesity A Disease #7: Demands Empathy

Next in my miniseries on arguments for calling obesity a disease is the issue of empathy. Our normal response to people who happen to be affected by a disease – including lung cancer and STDs – is at least some measure of empathy (even if residual stigma continues to exist). Even if the disease was entirely preventable and you did your lot to hasten its development, once you declare yo… Read More »

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Arguments For Calling Obesity A Disease #6: Attitude Of Health Care Providers

Next, in my miniseries on arguments to support calling obesity (defined as excess or abnormal body fat that affects your health), I turn to the impact on health care providers. Currently, most health care practitioners will happily limit their role in obesity management to warning their patients about the many health consequences of carrying excess weight and advise them to lose weight. They do no… Read More »

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