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The Canadian Obesity Guidelines Are Here – Time To Join The Conversation!

As of this morning, the 2020 Canadian Clinical Practice Guidelines for Obesity Management in Adults are out on the CMAJ and Obesity Canada websites, respectively.

These guidelines present a departure from previous guidelines on a number of important issues.

For one, Obesity is clearly defined as “a prevalent, complex, progressive and relapsing chronic disease, characterized by abnormal or excessive body fat (adiposity), that impairs health.”

Although BMI and waist circumference can still be used for populations surveillance and screening purposes, the ultimate diagnosis should be based on the impact that adiposity has on health and not some arbitrary anthropometric cutoffs.

Other topics that receive strong consideration include the role of weight bias in clinical practice, a departure from solely weight-centric outcome with a focus on health and wellbeing, learning from the body positivity movement, recognising the importance of root causes including psychosocial factors and mental health, and much more.

Given that there will be many questions and issues around many of these topics, especially with regard to implementation in practice, Obesity Canada is also launching an online information and discussion platform OC-Connect-Pro, where health professionals can connect and share information, tap into tools and education about the guidelines.

To join OC-Connect-Pro click here.

Edmonton, AB


  1. Do you deal with the after math of gastric bypass? I had roux n y surgery april 2018 and have lost 120 lbs (heaviest weight 200lbs )I continue to lose weight due to body not excepting nutrients . I am on a feeding tube now to keep me alive. My surgeon and the original gastric doc in Toronto have wash thier hands of me as they have no more solutions for me. I am on so much meds trying to cope with all of this that I am just existing! Can you help me or know someone who can?

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  2. The medical community’s lack of knowledge regarding obesity is astounding and leave too many Canadians seeking answers often from dubious sources. Having been mostly underweight my whole life after contracting Epstein-Barr and thereafter diagnosed with Hashimoto’s I gained over 50lbs, only to be told that thyroid issues could not be responsible for such a weight gain which is simply not true. Health issues continued to plague me, lack of motivation with flat affect was diagnosed as depression then treated with anti-depressants which caused a further 20lb weight gain. Low metabolism, low blood pressure and low heart rate made me realize my thyroid was not being properly addressed so after years of marginal living, I dropped my doctor, cut gluten and stopped the anti-depressants (truly the most grueling and horrific process)and within 6 months I had dropped 40 pounds with no dieting or exercise. Then a couple years later, I gained 23 pounds in less than 4 weeks I knew my thyroid was the issue. Against much push back I was prescribed supplemental T3 and very slowly the 20lbs came off again. But still to this day I am carrying 40 lbs that I am now trying to address using Intermittent Fasting and eliminating all processed carbs (I have always eaten a whole foods diet, now I am just cutting out the final occasional cookie). My diet is mostly vegetables, fish and small amounts of meat, good fats and one serving of fruit per day. No alcohol ever and no fast food and I am losing less than 1/2 pound per week but at least I am losing and no longer gaining. Yes, I have had numerous traumas (I am 63 years old so yes, loss has been a fact of life) but have good supports and usually quite resilient. These past years of constant struggle to lose weight and regain my life has caused me to almost give up and I feel my overall resilience is lessening because of how poorly the medical community has responded. I have felt invalidated in my own knowledge about my body, I have basically been told too many times to count that I need to eat less and exercise more which never helped me lose a single pound in thirty years. (I have played competitive sports all my life and continue to play tennis 3-4 times per week). I know GP’s are generalists but considering it is one of the most important factors in so many diseases it is shocking how ill informed and ill equipped Canadian doctors are at treating/helping their patients. Do not get me started on how many obese doctors continue to push the same narrative or else dodge all questions themselves. I am cautiously hopeful that your initiative may make some inroads and real answers and treatments can finally be developed to address these issues. Fat people are exhausted and discouraged and if diets truly worked we all would be thin and fat free. Clearly something is amiss and it is NOT that people do not try hard enough it is that they try and fail, try and fail and fail and fail. Again, diets do not work. Every fat person I have ever met has been dieting most of their lives without success or with very minimal but fleeting success. To keep blaming people for being overweight is to miss something from the bigger picture. NO ONE WANTS TO BE FAT and they are NOT lazy! Thanks for the opportunity to rant, hope you can achieve the one thing millions are seeking the answer to. Good Luck!

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