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A recent study on America's medical future gave the USA a grade of F as in fact.
Now the American Medical Association has officially voted to classify obesity as a disease.
The group is recommending new measures to fight what it calls an obesity epidemic in this country about a third of the adults in the US are considered obese.
In 2008 medical costs associated with obesity were estimated -- 147.
And on average medical costs for obese -- patients each year run 14129.
And for those who are of normal weight.
So what about this issue let's talk about it -- doctor Richard for shine director of the first -- center for comprehensive medicine.
Doctor Marc Marc Siegel you know law professor of medicine.
At NYU -- -- -- medical center and a member of the Fox News medical -- teams all of a sudden doctor for shine.
Obesity is a disease according to the medical American Medical Association good idea.
Or not -- a good idea what we've been faced with for too many years are people that have been under treated because they are overweight.
And overweight does lead to a number of serious medical conditions asthma diabetes heart disease high blood pressure.
And those particular conditions often are neglected because doctors are afraid to have the discussion in the first place.
This opens up the discussion okay but doctor Siegel -- I get that but isn't it really a matter of diet and exercise and if you do those two things and in the proper balance don't you lose weight.
Well -- it's not always a matter that a math here in lies the problem sometimes it is lifestyle sometimes it is exercise that will treat it.
Getting off the couch sometimes it is diet only related sometimes it's other metabolic conditions that we have to figure out I don't think medically.
Strictly speaking that obesity is a disease I think it's X syndrome.
Or -- condition.
Utilizing it in this way is more or less a gimmick.
To get more attention -- spotlighted on it.
Which may lead to better treatments -- -- doctor for show and said it may prevent diseases I'm really worried about like hypertension diabetes and heart disease on the other hand.
It may -- to insurers covering very -- it was treatments.
That are not scientifically proven some kind of Nutrisystem.
Things that are will extend health care cost so I can look at this both ways -- there.
There are also some some -- new drugs on the market for instance that that might be covered it as you know part of a medical treatment plan if now this thing is considered a disease three on and we have eighty million people right now who are clinically obese and 17% of children are -- as well.
What we have is a situation where we need new treatments we need to incentivize.
Insurance companies we need to -- -- -- the food industry the medical industry and the pharmaceutical industry.
To create new treatments and new approach -- to deal with this problem.
Right now we're -- and this will be a serious problem for us going forward.
500 billion it estimated cost within the next twenty years but I can also hear people saying.
You know all I I'm not going to you know home give up mine.
Car and walked to the store whatever I have a disease.
Well that's what I'm worried about -- look this is an enormous problem I don't want anyone out there to think that -- minimizing this obesity is an enormous problem and it's connected directly.
To our worst health problems in the United States including heart disease and in certain cases cancer sedentary behavior we're we're.
Rampant within and it's not just 13 of Americans being obese it's two thirds of Americans being overweight.
We need to shine a spotlight on that we need all kinds of treatments and incentives for.
But calling -- disease is unclear whether it's really gonna move things in the right direction and I.
We need more attitude we need more doctors talking about it we need more patients thinking about it.
All right we're gonna have to leave the discussion -- it's uninteresting concept I don't know good arguments on both sides really.
Doctor Seigel doctor for -- thanks for coming into the series.
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