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8th Annual Obesity Bootcamp

delta lodge at kananaskis

Kananaskis, Alberta

Regular readers will recall that for the past eight years, I have had the pleasure of spending about ten days each year with a select group of the brightest and best of students and new professionals working in the field of obesity research from across Canada.

The annual “bootcamp”, run by the Canadian Obesity Network, has in the past been held in Duschesnay, a small resort in Quebec, and has so far trained over 175 trainees in all aspects or obesity research.

This year’s bootcamp, which began yesterday, adds a twist as it is the first time that the Canadian Obesity Network has partnered with the University of Leipzig, a major centre of obesity research in Germany.

Not only does the class of 2013 include eight German trainees but also several faculty from Leipzig, who have travelled all the way to Canada to teach at this summer school.

And of course, the Canadian trainees come from universities across Canada including, UBC, York, McMaster, U Ottawa, U Alberta, Memorial, McGill, Laurentian, U Waterloo, U Saskatchewan and U Manitoba (with one trainee attending from Harvard Medical School).

The 10 days of training are designed to provide a broad overview of all aspects of obesity research (from basic neuroscience, cell biology and genetics to epidemiology, nutrition and clinical research) to the next generation of obesity researchers and health professionals.

For me, spending 10 days with this elite group of trainees is always a thought-provoking and stimulating experience, from which I continue to benefit year after year.

This year’s international mix is sure to make this event even more engaging and challenging.

I certainly look forward to an exciting ten days at this year’s bootcamp in the Canadian rockies.

Kananaskis, AB


  1. Dr. Sharma, you are one of my heroes! While I have never been obese, I was raised being TOLD I was obese by my family, so I guess you would say I’m emotionally obese. And all the bias and stigma and discrimination I see really hurts me to the core. So the fact that you are working to spread your realistic and humanly caring knowledge about obesity warms my heart. And makes me feel better for my friends who ARE obese (we have a lot of them in the US) who, I hope, will eventually be regarded as the human beings they are, and who are struggling with a health problem not of their own making. Keep up the good work! <3

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  2. Dr Sharma, as you know, modern rates of sugar consumption – especially via sugary drinks – are a key driver of global obesity and diabetes, together the greatest public-health challenge of our times:

    In an effort to counter these disturbing trends – especially amongst young people and Indigenous peoples – I am calling for a ban on all sugary drinks in all schools in all nations:

    Readers, if after assessing the facts you think this proposal has merit, please forward my piece in the link above to parents, students, teachers, principals and heads of schools, nurses, doctors, dentists and others involved in public health and education.

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  3. Super excited to have a student at the Boot Camp this summer from Memorial University. Looks like an interesting and diverse group of students. Looking forward to hearing all about the latest in obesity research. Have a great week:)

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  4. I have a relative who is 65 years old, very obese (BMI 48), and early CHF. He is Italian, and is interested in a medically-supervised weight loss resort, like they have in Europe. Anything like that in Canada?

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