Table 3 Consensus statements on the stigma of obesity: recommendations

From: Joint international consensus statement for ending stigma of obesity

1Weight-based stigma and obesity discrimination should not be tolerated in education, healthcare, or public-policy sectors.U
2Explaining the gap between scientific evidence and the conventional narrative of obesity built around unproven assumptions and misconceptions may help reduce weight bias and alleviate its numerous harmful effects.A
3The conventional narrative of obesity built around unproven assumptions of personal responsibility, and misconceptions about the causes and remedies of obesity causes harm to individuals and to society. Media, policy makers, educators, HCPs, academic Institutions, public health agencies, and government must ensure that the messages and narrative of obesity are free from stigma and coherent with modern scientific evidence.A
4Obesity should be recognized and treated as a chronic disease in healthcare and policy sectors.A
5We call on the media to produce fair, accurate, and non-stigmatizing portrayals of obesity. A commitment from the media is needed to shift the narrative around obesity.U
Healthcare and education of HCPs
6Academic institutions, professional bodies, and regulatory agencies must ensure that formal teaching on the causes, mechanisms, and treatments of obesity are incorporated into standard curricula for medical trainees, and other HCPs.U
7HCPs specialized in treating obesity should provide evidence of stigma-free practice skills. Professional bodies should encourage, facilitate, and develop methods to certify knowledge of stigma and its effects, along with stigma-free skills and practices.A
8Given the prevalence of obesity and obesity-related diseases, appropriate infrastructure for the care and management of people with obesity, including severe obesity, must be standard requirement for accreditation of medical facilities and hospitals.U
Public health
9Public health practices and messages should not use stigmatizing approaches to promote anti-obesity campaigns. These practices are objectively harmful and should be banned.A
10Public health authorities should identify and reverse policies that promote weight-based stigma, while increasing scientific rigor in obesity-related public policy.A
11Research in obesity and type 2 diabetes should receive appropriate public funding, commensurate to their prevalence and impact on human health and society.A
Policies and legislation
12There should be strong and clear policies to prohibit weight-based discrimination.U
13Policies and legislation to prohibit weight discrimination are an important and timely priority to reduce or eliminate weight-based inequities.U