Now is the time to stop using old information to make new decisions about obesity & weight loss. Today we know more about how the body stores excess fat than we knew ten years ago. Obesity is a complex disease that uniquely impacts each individual. The old "calories in vs. calories out" approach isn't enough at the individual or population levels. World Obesity Day is a great time to celebrate how far we've come in understanding obesity. To meaningfully impact the obesity epidemic, it's time to accept the new truths about obesity & act accordingly.
Negativity is not the way to promote positive lifestyle changes. Shame & blame has to go. Weight bias makes obesity worse, not better.
"One size fits all" approaches don't work.
Population-based obesity data helps inform systematic changes such as policy changes.
Population-based data is just the starting point for discovering an individual's key to overcoming obesity. We can't ignore or overlook individual obesity experiences.
Saying "Eat Less, Move More" isn't enough. Over 70 weight gain triggers influence how the body stores fat.
People don't choose to have obesity.
Some people are genetically more likely to store extra fat tissue.
Weight gain triggers aren't "excuses." On the contrary, understanding the biopsychosocial factors that trigger obesity enhances our ability to provide practical, sustainable treatments for obesity.
Meaningful Treatment Truths
Lifestyle interventions may not be enough for some people. Effective obesity treatment is not a cosmetic issue. True, beauty and health can come in a variety of sizes. However, some people need sustainable weight-loss interventions to optimize their metabolic health and prevent diseases associated with obesity.
True, lifestyle changes are the foundation of lasting change. But there are times when additional proven obesity treatments are needed. Proven obesity treatments for sustainable weight loss:
*Also known as "anti-obesity" medications. I prefer not to use the term "anti-obesity."
Make Treatment Accessible
Currently, many people do not have
access to many life-enhancing treatments.
The Treat and Reduce Obesity Act (TROA) is one crucial way obesity advocacy organizations are helping. TROA will help ensure everyone with obesity has fair access to optimal health.
Obesity is a complex disease. But we have learned a lot that can help improve obesity treatment on both the individual and population levels. I am optimistic that we can make meaningful changes by releasing misinformation and embracing the new obesity truths. We are continually learning more information that helps enhance obesity care.
On World Obesity Day, let's celebrate our progress as we persevere to create a better future to help individuals overcome obesity and live happy, healthy lives.
Cheers to Embracing Happiness & "Health Wealth"!
Dr. Sylvia Gonsahn-Bollie, MD is a dual-board certified obesity expert, Diplomate American
Board of Obesity Medicine, and best-selling author of Embrace You: Your Guide to Transforming Weight Loss Misconceptions Into Lifelong Wellness. Embrace You: Your Guide is Healthline.com's "Best Overall Weight Loss Book of 2022" & Livestrong.com's "Top 8 Weight Loss Books of 2022."
If you are a high-performing woman ready for your practical, personalized strategy to overcome perfectionism on your weight loss & wellness journey, it's time to Embrace You. Join the waitlist for the next session in April- only 4 spaces left.
Connect with Dr. Sylvia at firstname.lastname@example.org.