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Should the American Medical Association Have Classified Obesity as a Disease?

  • A genetic standpoint

    I say yes because obesity is like type 2 diabetes, COPD, and heart disease, in the way that it develops over time. Obesity and the other conditions mentioned are mostly a result of lifestyle and diet choices that over time lead to impaired bodily functioning. There is also evidence that obesity may be built in to the genetic code of some population groups. I'm not excusing America from being overweight because most of us can change it if we are willing to adapt our lifestyles, but the same is true for most type 2 diabetics...

  • No, it is not something you contract.

    No, the American Medical Association should not have classified obesity as a disease, because it is more of a condition. Yes, it is a medical problem, but not every medical problem is a disease. Obesity is a condition that a person has after a long period of what are usually unhealthy lifestyle choices. Yes, it is a problem, but not something you contract.

  • Sometimes a symptom and sometimes just poor choices

    Obesity is not a disease. Like the other poster said it can be a symptom. But often times it's not even that, it's the result of poor dieting. So change your diet. You'll feel hungry a lot. Tough, then deal with it or stop complaining about being obese. If you have a goal that's important enough to you you'll tough it out, foresake pleasures, embrace pains, and get through it. There is no iron law that human beings have to follow the dictates of pleasure and pain. Making "obesity" a disease is only reinforcing the popular subtle message that we are helpless slaves of our emotions, feelings, and impulses. It's become popular as an excuse in this undisciplined age where people equate "individualism" with not taking any responsibility. Individualism should be striving to be the best for your rational interests. The Japanese who stress collectivism more than individualism do individualism better than we do.

    Worse yet you want to be more self-disciplined and you express this in conversation and people will say you are being too hard on yourself. Why in the world should I identity my emotional reactions, my impulses, the baser aspects of my nature as being "myself". The thinking, logical, rational part of my self that sets sound goals and brings me to them that is much more myself than impulses.

  • Obesity is a symptom of other issues.

    Although obesity is a problem in the United States, it is not a disease. Rather, it is the symptom of other underlying health issues. Since the underlying issues could match a wide array of conditions and diseases of varied severity, it is important that obesity be properly evaluated by doctors to determine what its cause. If obesity was classified as a disease of its own, the investigation would end with the diagnosis of obesity, and other conditions would go unnoticed.


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