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Comment & Response |

Reducing Weight Stigma in the Health Care Setting Important Considerations for Medical Education

John P. Twarog, MPH1; Kendrin R. Sonneville, ScD, RD2
[+] Author Affiliations
1Department of Epidemiology, Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University, Statesboro
2Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor
JAMA Pediatr. 2015;169(12):1178. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2015.2699.
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To the Editor In the editorial by Gillman and Block titled “Children With Obesity: How Are They Different?”,1 the authors discussed the importance of tailoring a personalized approach for treating individuals with obesity. In particular, the authors noted the importance of clinicians being able to provide effective weight counseling to parents and children with an unhealthy body weight, while avoiding weight-related terminology that certain individuals may find stigmatizing. Medical educators should strive to ensure that medical students and residents recognize the psychosocial aspects associated with the development and maintenance of obesity in children and adolescents. In addition to obesity-related physiological complications, it is essential that medical students, residents, and clinicians have a deep understanding of the psychosocial conditions that may develop in children and adolescents with excess body weight, such as depression or an eating disorder.1,2


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