More Americans than ever are living with obesity. The number of adults with the condition has skyrocketed 200 percent over the past 40 years. Obesity continues to contribute to a number of public health concerns such as its associated comorbidities and healthcare costs in addition to legitimate concerns about overall population health in the face of novel health threats like COVID-19.
However, as the number of Americans struggling to manage their weight continues to grow 72 percent of the country lives with overweight or obesity so has our clinical understanding of this complex but treatable condition. We know that there are hormonal and metabolic differences between people who live with obesity and those who do not. We know that there is a range of effective treatment options for obesity, and while it certainly includes behavior modification and cognitive therapies, we can also explore pharmacological and surgical interventions. We also know that there are limitations to the effectiveness of physical activity on weight loss and obesity management.
Given all that we now know about obesity, it is vital that clinicians and other healthcare professionals make it a priority to educate themselves on best practices for effectively integrating physical activity into obesity treatment plans.
We need to re-examine the role of physical activity in obesity management. Heres why.
The notion that people can win the fight against obesity simply through dieting and exercise was taken to a new level with the introduction of The Biggest Loser to the cultural landscape. Contestants experienced dramatic weight loss while appearing on the show just as we might expect to happen when patients with obesity are prescribed high levels of physical activity along with around-the-clock monitoring but maintaining highly intense exercise regimes is unsustainable for most people with overweight and obesity. Additionally, a key insight from a long-term study of Biggest Loser contestants tells us that physical activity plays a larger role in maintaining weight loss than it does in catalyzing it.
Certainly, that doesnt mean that physical activity plays no role in the weight loss journey. But it does mean that we should exercise caution in thinking about physical activity in terms of isolated exercise not only is it an ineffective weight loss treatment for patients with obesity, but it reflects an outdated understanding of the metabolic mechanisms behind weight loss.
We know that sitting for long periods of time can negatively impact insulin resistance, but breaking up those periods with short walks can reduce insulin and glucose responses. With that in mind, a more effective and sustainable approach would dispense with eat less, move more and instead encourage patients to sit less, walk more.
What healthcare professionals need to know about incorporating physical activity into obesity treatment.
Heres what we do know about physical activity it can power a number of positive health outcomes. Exercise can improve lipoprotein levels, blood pressure, insulin resistance, mood and brain function and cardiovascular health in patients with obesity.
Healthcare professionals should keep the following best practices in mind when collaborating with patients on obesity treatment plans:
Keep patients grounded: Create realistic expectations of weight loss results, if any, based on individual patient activity programs. Help patients start to take a longer-term view of the weight loss journey to stave off feelings of burnout or frustration with the process. And level-set about the risk of sore muscles after starting a new exercise program.
Slow and steady wins the race: Patients often begin the treatment process with a great deal of enthusiasm which can inspire positive behavior changes, but it can also create the risk of exercise-related injury from doing too much, too fast. Help patients learn their individual exercise level and collaborate on finding ways to support and gradually increase the intensity.
Get things going: Starting a new exercise program can be a major hurdle to overcome. Help patients make the first step by connecting them with an easy-to-follow, actionable regimen that incorporates physical activity into their everyday lives. An easy place to start is by advising patients to walk a certain number of steps each day and gradually increase that footprint over time.
Reframe it: As discussed, physical activity delivers a number of health benefits beyond weight loss. Keep the myriad positive outcomes of physical activity top of mind for patients and help them to understand that exercise is just one part of a broader plan of care to improve their overall health. This insight can make it easier for patients to prioritize physical activity everyday.
Grow your obesity medicine knowledge: Healthcare professionals can better meet the needs of this rapidly growing segment of Americans by deepening their understanding of obesity medicine. The Obesity Medicine Association (OMA) provides a number of resources to encourage this endeavor, including The Obesity Algorithm, Obesity Treatment Proficiency Badges, ABOM certification preparation materials and more. OMA is also hosting a series of virtual courses on the fundamentals of obesity treatment an informative primer on evidence-based approaches for evaluating, diagnosing and treating obesity.
The number of Americans struggling with obesity may be growing but so is our knowledge of how to effectively treat the condition. Healthcare professionals who bring this knowledge into their practice areas can play a more active role in guiding patients with obesity to better health outcomes.
For more obesity medicine resources, or to become an OMA member, please visit: http://www.obesitymedicine.org.
Angela Fitch, MD, FACP, FOMA is the Associate Director of the Massachusetts General Hospital Weight Center and faculty at the Harvard Medical School. She is board certified in obesity medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics. Dr. Fitch serves as Vice President of the Obesity Medicine Association and previously served as Secretary-Treasurer.
See the original post:
Why we need to rethink treating obesity with physical activity - Medical Economics
- The Pandemic and Childhood Weight Gain | Tufts Now - Tufts Now - January 5th, 2021
- How the American Diet Turbocharges COVID-19 - Mother Jones - January 5th, 2021
- Why do some people find it harder than others to lose weight? - The Guardian - January 5th, 2021
- After magazine calls obesity 'healthy', here is understanding when it crosses the line - Times Now - January 5th, 2021
- 80% of the Covid deaths in Yucatan involved hypertension, diabetes, or obesity - The Yucatan Times - January 5th, 2021
- Are metabolic hormones the next frontier in cancer treatment? - MedCity News - January 5th, 2021
- Obesity, the other risk of American football - The Press Stories - January 5th, 2021
- Chronic inflammation of obesity: How it affects blood vessel cells - TheHealthSite - January 5th, 2021
- Brown fat may protect you against cardiac, metabolic conditions: How is it different from white fat? - TheHealthSite - January 5th, 2021
- A Recipe for Homemade Obesity: The Association Between Depression, Obesity, and Cognitive Deficits - Psychiatric Times - January 5th, 2021
- Aspirin Use for Venous Thromboembolism Prevention Is Safe and Effective in Overweight and Obese Patients Undergoing Revision Total Hip and Knee... - January 5th, 2021
- Assessing the Link Between Sugary Drinks and Cancer - Pharmacy Times - January 5th, 2021
- Dr. Edward Mason All Obituaries - The Gazette - January 5th, 2021
- Researchers discover blood vessel cells that triggers harmful inflammation in obese mice - Study Finds - January 5th, 2021
- Obesity Surgery Devices Market Statistics, Facts and Figures, Size, Trend and Forecast by 2026 | Johnson & Johnson, Medtronic, Apollo Endosurgery ... - January 5th, 2021
- Chonky Kitty: The Internets Unhealthy Obsession Over Obese Cats - Nature World News - January 5th, 2021
- Nottingham declared one of UK's obesity hotspots in latest NHS report - Nottinghamshire Live - January 5th, 2021
- Influencers May Face Fines as China Tackles Obesity and Food Waste - The New York Times - December 28th, 2020
- Diabetes + Obesity = Diabesity: The Enemy Within You - Hindustan Times - December 28th, 2020
- Scientists Discover a Gene to Stay Thin Protects Against Diet-Induced Obesity - SciTechDaily - December 28th, 2020
- UK restricting promotions on 'unhealthy food' at supermarkets, retailers in bid to fight obesity - Fox News - December 28th, 2020
- COVID-19 and obesity: a clear and present danger in younger patients - The Daily Star - December 28th, 2020
- Obesity is associated with shorter telomere length in prostate stromal cells in men with aggressive prostate cancer - DocWire News - December 28th, 2020
- University of York leads 6 million bid to cut child obesity | York Press - York Press - December 28th, 2020
- Womens Health: Fighting obesity - NEWS10 ABC - December 28th, 2020
- Bariatric Surgery Might Reduce Severity of COVID-19 Infection - Medscape - December 28th, 2020
- Overweight and Obese Subjects Dosed with ASC41 Tablets in a Phase Ib Trial - PRNewswire - December 28th, 2020
- Clemson team hopes research will lead to more varieties of lentils - SCNow - December 28th, 2020
- Study links metabolic syndrome to higher cardiovascular risk in patients with psoriasis - National Institutes of Health - December 28th, 2020
- Obesity and smoking as risk factors for invasive mechanical ventilation in COVID-19: A retrospective, observational cohort study - DocWire News - December 28th, 2020
- 6 common myth around weight management and obesity, busted! - Times Now - December 28th, 2020
- Britain to restrict promotion of unhealthy food from April 2022 - Reuters - December 28th, 2020
- Tonix Pharmaceuticals Acquires Exclusive License to University of Geneva Technology for Oxytocin-Based Treatments for Treating Insulin Resistance,... - December 28th, 2020
- Long life: Cities across the US where people live the longest include San Francisco and Boulder - USA TODAY - December 28th, 2020
- Breast Cancer Survival Disparities: Need to Address Obesity - Medscape - December 12th, 2020
- Data shows link between obesity and developing severe COVID-19 symptoms - KTIV - December 12th, 2020
- Former Bin Laden subordinate released after judge agrees he's too obese to survive coronavirus - Fox News - December 12th, 2020
- Study finds more years of obesity tied to higher risk of diabetes - Atlanta Journal Constitution - December 12th, 2020
- The Hidden Dangers Of Excessive Fat: Know Why You Need To Shed Those Extra Kilos - NDTV - December 12th, 2020
- Obesity in children might be due to genetic variant resulting in less leptin production - Hindustan Times - December 12th, 2020
- Study finds Pre-K students on South Texas border have higher rates of obesity related to poverty - Border Report - December 12th, 2020
- Rhythm Pharmaceuticals Announces Appointments of Camille L. Bedrosian, MD, and Lynn Tetrault, JD, to its Board of Directors - BioSpace - December 12th, 2020
- FoodTech startup treats obesity, diabetes through individualized AI-driven nutrition plans - CTech - December 12th, 2020
- Tips to help families navigate the growing problem of childhood obesity - WNEP Scranton/Wilkes-Barre - December 3rd, 2020
- 13.2% of 10- to 17-year-olds in Maine are obese, study finds - The Center Square - December 3rd, 2020
- 13.7% of 10- to 17-year-olds in New Hampshire are obese, study finds - The Center Square - December 3rd, 2020
- Tips to help families navigate the growing problem of childhood obesity - KESQ - December 1st, 2020
- 10.7% of 10- to 17-year-olds in New York are obese, study finds - The Center Square - December 1st, 2020
- 20.4% of 10- to 17-year-olds in Tennessee are obese, study finds - The Center Square - December 1st, 2020
- Food Insecurity Increasingly Tied to Obesity in the United States - Food Tank - December 1st, 2020
- Transomics analysis reveals allosteric and gene regulation axes for altered hepatic glucose-responsive metabolism in obesity - Science - December 1st, 2020
- Rhythm Pharmaceuticals Announces FDA Approval of IMCIVREE (setmelanotide) as First-ever Therapy for Chronic Weight Management in Patients with Obesity... - December 1st, 2020
- PCOS and diabetes risk increases with obesity here's how they affect fertility in women - Firstpost - December 1st, 2020
- Higher COVID-19 Risk Leading More Patients With Obesity To Weight Loss Surgery - CBS Boston - November 26th, 2020
- Shift in language to help reduce obesity stigma - WA Health - November 26th, 2020
- Anti-Obesity Day 2020: Simple ways to eat smart and beat weight gain - The Indian Express - November 26th, 2020
- DDRC DIVING AND OBESITY SURVEY - DIVE Magazine - November 26th, 2020
- The Link Between Obesity and Puberty - Michigan Medicine - November 25th, 2020
- Evaluating Innovative Health Care Solutions for Obesity - Harvard Business Review - November 25th, 2020
- Researchers Discover Hormone That Can Curb Appetite and Help Deal With Obesity - Science Times - November 25th, 2020
- Gut hormone that regulates fat found abnormal in obesity - India New England - November 25th, 2020
- Research shows bariatric surgery may reduce severity of Covid-19 in patients with obesity - Hindustan Times - November 25th, 2020
- More Obese Patients Seeking Weight Loss Surgery To Reduce COVID-19 Risk - CBS Boston - November 25th, 2020
- Obesity is still on the rise among American adults - Harvard Health - Harvard Health - November 25th, 2020
- Association Between Clogged Arteries and Body Size Phenotype? Study Finds, It Varies - AJMC.com Managed Markets Network - November 25th, 2020
- Parents' wake up call as obesity and sunburn risks rise - Daily Mercury - November 25th, 2020
- Executive summary: learning from local authorities with downward trends in childhood obesity - GOV.UK - November 25th, 2020
- Study: Gut hormones' regulation of fat production abnormal in obesity, fatty liver disease - University of Illinois News - November 25th, 2020
- Brands call for alternatives to online junk food ads ban - The Guardian - November 25th, 2020
- As Obesity Soars, a Mayo Clinic DNA Study May Have Cracked The Cause - Observer - November 22nd, 2020
- Looking at the unintended consequences of obesity campaigns - Contemporary Pediatrics - November 22nd, 2020
- In Those With Obesity, Will Losing Weight Cut COVID-19 Severity? - Medscape - November 22nd, 2020
- Pupil measurements accelerated amid fears of obesity crisis - The Independent - November 22nd, 2020
- Bay Area is home to two of the least sinful cities in the U.S. - The Mercury News - November 22nd, 2020
- Epidemiological and immunological features of obesity and SARS-CoV-2 - DocWire News - November 22nd, 2020
- Obesity does not adversely impact the outcome of unicompartmental knee arthroplasty for osteoarthritis: a meta-analysis of 80,798 subjects - DocWire... - November 22nd, 2020
- Obesity Linked to Higher Risk of Covid-19 Infection - Contagionlive.com - November 22nd, 2020
- Horse vet gives fresh scoop on the equine obesity epidemic - Horsetalk - November 22nd, 2020
- New podcast episode from Morris Animal Foundation highlights the equine obesity epidemic - EQUUS Magazine - November 22nd, 2020
- Effects of Body Mass Index on Peri-operative Outcomes in Patients Undergoing Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion Surgery - DocWire News - November 22nd, 2020