Long-term successful management of obesity is challenging. However, as detailed in this article, a moderate amount of weight loss (5–10%) is clinically meaningful and has a significant impact on obesity-associated complications. Shifting the focus from weight loss to health improvement, prevention and treatment of acute and chronic medical conditions, life lived and enjoyed in good health, and improved life expectancy, we can substantially change the clinical approach to the management of obesity.
This review discusses the assessment and management of obesity in the light of this new approach. The evidence that small but clinically-meaningful sustained weight loss, which can be achieved with medical means, can change the trajectory and outcome of many chronic conditions linked with obesity, can motivate patients and clinicians to consider medical weight management. The role of pharmacotherapy as one part of the treatment of obesity will be explored.
Expert commentary is provided by endocrinologist and obesity specialist, Dr Ole Schmiedel from Auckland.
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