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Diagnosis: Obesity

scaleIt’s been called a risk factor, an epidemic and a challenge to the health of both children and adults. Now, obesity is being called something else: a disease. That’s the finding of the American Medical Association (AMA), which announced the classification at its annual meeting.

AMA members and other medical experts believe that recognizing obesity as a disease will put more attention on addressing this far-reaching health problem and aid in the fight against conditions that are linked to obesity, including heart disease and diabetes. Some also believe the decision may eventually lead to insurance coverage for obesity treatments like medications and surgery.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that more than one-third of adults are considered obese, with health consequences ranging from heart disease to stroke, diabetes and cancer. If you’re struggling with your weight, talk to your doctor about safe weight-loss methods, including medically supervised weight-loss programs.