More than 40% of adults in the United States — that’s two out of every five — are living with obesity.
Obesity is a chronic and misunderstood health condition with struggles and impacts that go beyond weight:
After losing weight by reducing calories,
THE BODY TRIES TO PUT IT BACK ON
One study found
Only 55% of people
with obesity receive a
Results from quantitative surveys in a study of over 3,000 adult patients with a BMI of 30 kg/m2 or more, based on self-reported height and weight.
90% of people
struggle to keep weight off long-term
Long-term weight loss defined as losing at least 10% of initial body weight and maintaining the loss for at least 1 year. Results from a quantitative survey of over 3,000 adult patients with a BMI of 30 kg/m2 or more, based on self-reported height and weight.
Worlwide obesity has
And rates of obesity in the United States are expected to increase
Some studies have shown that genes account for
of individual differences in BMI
Obesity is associated with
At least 60 health conditions
People struggling with their weight may feel alone and insecure and are often on the receiving end of negativity, bias or bullying, whether at the grocery store or at work, in the media, and on social media. And whether people realize it or not, their weight does not define them. And obesity? It’s not something to be ashamed of. It’s a health condition, not a character flaw.
Now is our moment to start having open and shame-free conversations about weight and obesity.
It’s all about creating an understanding that obesity can impact the:
Obesity goes deep. Assumptions and biases that exist around weight can have a real and cumulative impact on mental health and morale. People may internalize this weight bias and blame themselves, leading to depression, anxiety and low self-esteem.
Weight management is not just about willpower. Many factors are also at play within our bodies, including genetics and biology, which can impact how we gain, lose and regain weight. These factors make living with obesity a unique journey for everyone and also play a role in physical health, with links to at least 60 other health conditions.
Weight bias still exists. It leaves people feeling judged in society. Weight bias can be present in most areas of our life, including at work, in the doctor’s office, on the shows we watch, among friends and family, and more. In addition, factors like socioeconomics and cultural influence can sometimes contribute to further biases.
By shattering these misconceptions, real change will come in understanding that biology and genetics play a role alongside diet and other factors. Then, it’s about putting a spotlight on the need we have for better care and compassion from everyone–family, friends, coworkers, strangers and even doctors.
A massive change like this has happened before. Depression is viewed as a valid health issue thanks to advancements in cultural understanding, and it’s time to create the same change for how obesity is seen and treated.
It only takes a spark to light a fire. Let’s ignite a chain reaction that ends shame and shatters the misconceptions. It’s bigger than numbers on a scale. It’s bigger than diet and exercise. It’s bigger than lifestyle choices.