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How to Combat Stigma Against Obesity

Obesity is a common, serious, and costly chronic disease. According to the CDC, having obesity puts people at risk for many other serious chronic diseases, especially amid COVID-19. Obesity is a global problem, but as humans, we all have the responsibility to combat its disproportionate impact on racial and ethnic minority groups, and the ability to gain control of our health and wellness.

World Obesity Day, March 4, gives us an opportunity to organize our efforts and devise practical solutions to this epidemic.

The stigma that comes with weight gain often deters people from exercise. Weight discrimination plays a major part to anxiety, depression, and shorter lifespans amongst those who deal with it. This also includes things such as higher risks for heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and strokes.

So what do we do?

Let’s acknowledge that weight is not determined by only willpower. World Obesity Day is a day to learn about obesity—and unlearn the myths we have learned throughout the decades.

Fun facts about World Obesity Day!

Information provided by National Day Archives:

  • The World Health Organization estimates that more than 1.9 billion adults were overweight and 650 million were obese in 2016.
  • Obesity occurs when a person consumes more calories than they expend. That means increased physical activity can usually overcome obesity.
  • More than 35% of American adults under 40 are obese.
  • The Pacific islands are home to many of the most obese nations in the world.

How to celebrate World Obesity Day:

  • Look up myths about obesity. You might be glad to discover that you’re wrong about a thing or two. It’s an exercise in compassion.
  • Volunteer your time and your resources. Join the campaign to fight obesity and the stigmas that it brings.
  • Eat healthy foods in moderate quantities, exercise daily, and drink more water than other beverages.
The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of A Second Chance, Inc.

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