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Obesity Disease Manifesto

We believe that the obesity disease is a medical condition. The root of the problem is a deep-level hormone imbalance causing the body to hold onto excess fat as if it were necessary for survival. Even though we know it is not healthy for the body to hold onto excess weight in this way, the weight “set point” is not under conscious control. The hormone system is pushed out of balance by some combination of genetic and environmental factors, with different factors for each individual.

We believe that prejudice against people with obesity is wrong. Obesity prejudice assumes that the obesity condition is a choice people make, so that people who suffer from obesity are 100% responsible for their condition. Prejudice assumes that obese people are less intelligent or less motivated; we believe instead that people who take the effort to manage the obesity disease are more motivated and often courageous. We see that society is not prejudiced in the same way against people with diabetes or heart disease; society needs to understand that it is proper to treat the obesity disease medically.

We believe that treating the obesity disease is a lifetime project. There is no full cure for this condition, but the condition can be managed and its impact can be reduced substantially. For example, bariatric surgery is a powerful intervention but it is only part of a long-term treatment plan. We will only achieve the best outcomes if we continue working together over many years.

We believe that every available tool must be put to work to bring the obesity disease under control and to help our patients reach better health that lasts. This means that we’ll teach and facilitate everything we can to help our patients maintain a healthy metabolism, including the hormonal impact of food, the importance of vitamins and other supplements, the importance of exercise, and the selected use of pharmacologic treatment to boost the impact of other therapy.

We believe that the science of obesity treatment is improving rapidly, and that every year brings new options for helping our patients get the obesity disease under control. We commit that we will remain at the forefront of medical knowledge and we will offer new therapy options to our patients as soon as practical benefit is proven.

We believe that we have useful tools to help every person who is suffering from the obesity disease, and we will not give up on any patient as long as they remain engaged and continue working with us.