AMA says more research needed to determine if obesity is a disease

The “Health on Today” blog of MSNBC runs a MyHealthNewsDaily article that reports the American Medical Association “decided more research was needed on” if obesity is a disease, “deferring the decision to a later date.”

Dr. Thomas Madejski, chair of the AMA’s committee on medical service, said that at “the AMA meeting, doctors pointed out that in some cases, people have underlying abnormalities that cause them to be obese.”

Additionally, some insurance companies do not cover obesity treatments because obesity is not considered a disease, and Madejski said that “the AMA wants to learn more about why this problem happens, and how prevalent it is.”

However, he added, “‘We did not want to make society more ill overall,’ by labeling obesity as a disease if that label is not warranted” and noted that “obese people may also be stigmatized, or may suffer psychological consequences if they are labeled as having a disease.”

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