REFRAMING THE OBESITY EPIDEMIC: SEPARATING THINNESS FROM HEALTH

By Daniel J. Green

How many of your clients first came to you after being told by their doctors that they needed to lose some weight? With the ever-increasing number of people who are struggling with overweight or obesity, doctors are undoubtedly issuing this directive more and more often. But what does a patient do with this information? It’s not as though he or she can simply go home and “lose some weight.” Presumably, the intention behind the doctor’s recommendation is a desire to improve the patient’s health, but is equating weight loss with health really in the patient’s best interest—and is it even accurate?

 

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Comments (5)

  1. Munkyman

    It can be & it may not be. They call it practicing medicine because we’re still learning best practices as well as learning about the complex interactions of things in the human body. Beyond all of that we’re all genetically different which means that some of us are predisposed to carry more weight & we’re apparently healthier that way. Others are predisposed to be far thinner & again healthy that way & then there’s the broad middle where when you find your own spot… you’re healthier that way. There’s no one good diet, I tend to prefer a paleo diet rich in meats & with my blood/body type it’s arguable that it’s the best diet for me as long as I maintain a paleo level of calorie burn.

    December 31, 2015
    1. knights68

      True that we/they are still “learning” however, when the default answer is to lose weight…. the first answer before even lifting up their stethoscope, this is a problem, IMO, beyond practice. It is a certain mentality, a certain behavior that is flawed and can be dangerous.
      You are right that we are all genetically different. I am a fat guy, in part because mt dads side of the family were big boys and girls, but know what? My cholesterol is perfect. How many people see me, a fat guy, and think I am sickly with cholesterol through the roof, blood pressure out of control… blah blah blah. Yet there is a segment of people who are overweight but otherwise healthy.
      I have been toying with the idea of Paleo but need to research it more as I have been working on finding my niche and/or making my own hybrid. Just simply finding something that works for me and is sustainable long term.

      December 31, 2015
      1. Munkyman

        Yep many doctors just “go with the flow” it’s more notable in psychology with the fad diagnoses & the push to be published. Being big is a strain on your heart, regardless of anything else so they have their reason for suggesting you lose weight when you’re big. Beyond that, we all have our own ideal lifespan & I hate to compare you to a dog but, we all know a big dog will die healthy years before a small dog. It’s arguable that if you got down to an ideal BMI you’d die sooner from the stress. So while trying to look out for your heart the doctor could be walking you right into a stroke or a cancer or who knows what. Heart disease still kills the most Americans so telling people to lose weight is kind of a reflex for them but, I agree 100% saying it doesn’t help, it’s not as if they’re giving practical advice on how you should go about it & generally they won’t because of both ignorance & fear of liability. They’ll happily let you stab about on your own & tell you if you’re killing yourself after the fact.

        December 31, 2015
  2. willsblog

    Doctors get all sorts of kickbacks from Pharmaceutical companies for prescribing their “medicines”. Doctors receive trips, vacations, “seminars”, and other perks from companies who want to encourage doctors to use their drugs. This has been somewhat reduced in the past few years but it still continues in part. Doctors “go with the flow” because it benefits their business, helps their bottom line, and increases their profits. Obamacare requires VERY expensive databases and equipment which many doctors cannot afford without charging exorbitant rates from their patients.

    January 01, 2016
  3. hass1973

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    May 16, 2017