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Overfatness: implications

        OVERFATNESS: IMPLICATIONS
1. Whatever is being done to reduce obesity is not working and the developed world will be facing an explosion of diabetes and other diseases if obesity continues to increase.
2. Programs to decrease fatness should be markedly different to programs to increase fitness.
3. Body weight is only a surrogate measure of fatness and the term overfatness' should be used where possible.
4. The aetiology of obesity is complex and it is particularly important to work closely with specialists when dealing with the severely obese.
5. Obesity and overfatness have complex, multi-factorial causes with biological, environmental and behavioural determinants suggesting that any notion of these being due to sloth or gluttony alone are now outdated.
6. Obese individuals need to understand that their degree of overfatness is genetically determined to a significant degree and that achieving a slim body requires a lifelong swim against the twin adverse tides of genes and environment. Realistic fat loss goals need to be set.
7. A population needs to change its environment to reduce the prevalence of obesity. Even small changes spread across the whole population have major influences.
8. There is a need to re-orient thinking about weight control from a simplistic, energy balance approach to a more complex, multi-dimensional, holistic approach involving long term lifestyle modification.

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