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Pediatric Collections: Obesity: Stigma Trends and Interventions
Obesity is one of the defining health challenges of our generation. Studies project that, if current trends continue, more than 50% of the US population will have obesity within the next 20 years. Alarmingly, severe obesity appears to be increasing in prevalence faster than overweight or “routine” obesity. Illness associated with obesity, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, steatohepatitis, and sleep apnea, is experiencing a commensurate increase in prevalence and severity. The obesity health crisis threatens to overwhelm our health care system, shorten life expectancy for the first time in recorded history, and reduce quality of life for millions. The most successful and cost-effective approaches to this epidemic involve the prevention and treatment of pediatric obesity. Additionally, obesity is affected by a myriad of factors, including individual genetics, personal behaviors, family habits, school and community programs, state and federal policy, and environmental factors.