1Pediatra endocrinologo, Ferrara; 2Pediatra diabetologo, Alessandria; 3Pedagogista, Greve in Chianti (Firenze)
4Anestesista rianimatore, Ferrara; 5IRCCS Materno-Infantile “Burlo Garofolo”, Trieste; 6Dipartimento di Medicina, Università di Padova; co-coordinatore della Obesity Management Task Force della European Association for the Study of Obesity
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Key words: Obesity, Weight stigma, Weight talking, Communication, Consensus
People with obesity daily face a pervasive and ubiquitous form of stigma on weight that damages health and reduces the likelihood of receiving adequate care. The stigma is reinforced by outdated ideas on body weight regulation and lack of up-to-date scientific knowledge. The prevailing opinion that obesity is a choice that can be avoided misleads public health policies, confuses messages in the media, undermines access to treatments and compromises research. The stigma is a serious obstacle, therefore tackling it is not only a matter of human rights and social justice, but a way to promote prevention and treatment. A large group of international experts examined the evidence on the causes and consequences of the stigma and developed a Consensus to end it, raising awareness among health workers, politicians and public opinion, encouraging training and facilitating a new narrative on obesity. Successful therapies for all people with obesity can arise from the shared struggle against the stigma.
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