Physicians and other health care professionals often perceive obesity
treatment as labor intensive and unsuccessful. Currently, only 42% of obese
adults report being advised to lose weight by their health care professional.1 Patients who do attempt to lose weight often arrange
to do so through commercial or self-help programs independent of their physician.2 If treatment success is defined exclusively as attaining
ideal weight after losing a large amount of weight during a short-term intervention,
obesity treatment will almost certainly fail. However, small weight losses
can reduce obesity-associated risk factors for chronic diseases such as diabetes
and hypertension.3 Obesity must be recognized
as a chronic condition for which no cure can reasonably be expected.4
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