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Doctors giving less weight loss advice to obese patients especially if poor and less educated
Tuesday, August 30, 2005 4:16 am Email this article
Obese patients receive less advice from doctors to lose weight, especially if they are poor or lack higher eduction, than they did a few years ago according to a study from Less advice to obese patients: 44% in 1994 vs 40% in 2000
In 2000, 40 percent of obese patients reported receiving advice from their doctor to lose weight compared to 44 percent in 1994.
Less advice to low income patients
People with less education and who earned less also received less advice to lose weight.
“Among obese persons not graduating from high school, advice declined from 41.4% to 31.8%,” the study noted.
Less advice to less educated patients
“[F]or those with annual household incomes below $25,000, advice dropped from 44.3% to 38.1%.”
No decline in advice to more educated patients
However, the prevalence of advice to obese patients with a college degree did not decline. It remained above 45 percent during the study period.
Doctors should be made aware of this and be urged to educate and advice all overweight patients about the health hazards of being overweight and the benefits of losing weight.
Jackson J, Doescher M, Saver BG, Hart L. Trends in professional advice to lose weight among obese adults, 1994 to 2000. J Gen Intern Med. 2005 Sep, 20(9):814-18.
AUTHOR’S CONTACT INFORMATION
Department of Sociology
University of Washington
Seattle, Washington 98195-4696, USA
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