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Letter from the Executive Director
TOS
Dear Colleagues,

As we enter the new year, it's a time when we take a look back at our successes and defeats, and turn these observations into goals for the coming year — our New Year's Resolutions. During 2013, we reached several landmarks that add renewed interest in and support for the Society's efforts moving into 2014; many of these were outlined in the 2013 news roundup shared a few weeks ago. We celebrate these great accomplishments, but we also recognize that there is still much more to be done to improve access to obesity treatment resources for patients, reduce weight bias, and — not only better educate clinicians, policymakers and the public on the importance of treating obesity as a disease — but also give them to tools and resources to do so.
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ASSOCIATION NEWS


FTC Cracks Down on Sensa, HCG
TOS
The Federal Trade Commission is taking action against the makers of several weight loss products for intentionally misleading consumers into supposed "weight loss" aids, such as Sensa and Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG). This news about the FTC effort to collect $34 million on behalf of consumers was published yesterday by NBC News.

Approximately a year ago, The Obesity Society issued a position statement on HCG calling it "an ineffective approach to treat obesity." A review of the scientific evidence by TOS did not support the use of HCG for the treatment of obesity.

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New Obesity Infographic: Let's Start a Healthy Conversation About Obesity
TOS
There's a clear communications disconnect when it comes to weight-loss discussions among physicians and patients. According to a new survey conducted by Eisai Inc., in partnership with the Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) and The Obesity Society (TOS), only 56 percent of adults affected by overweight or obesity report ever having discussed weight with their doctor, yet all doctors surveyed say they counsel their patients affected by overweight or obesity about diet and exercise. A little communication can go a long way, potentially improving related health risk factors for millions as obesity rates continue to rise. Check out the "Let's Start a Healthy Conversation" infographic here, post it to your website and social media channels, and share it with friends and colleagues!
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SPONSORED CONTENT


Now Available! Free Online CME for Obesity Management
TOS
The Obesity Society and Vindico Medical Education are pleased to announce that a new Expert Video Interview Series supported by Vivus, Orexigen and Takeda is now live on TheDoctorschannel.Com. The series features leading obesity experts providing guidance for physicians on the importance of weight loss for health and identifying the best treatment plan to meet each individual's needs. The video series is available for a total of 2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ (0.25 credits per video) and will expire on Dec. 17, 2014. Check out the materials online here and don’t miss this opportunity to learn from the following obesity experts:
  • Ken Fujioka, MD, Scripps Clinic
  • Robert Kushner, MD, FACP, Northwestern University
  • Donna H. Ryan MD, FACP, Pennington Biomedical Research Center
  • Holly R. Wyatt, MD, University of Colorado Denver
  • W. Timothy Garvey, MD, UAB Diabetes Research and Training Center
  • Anne Wolf, MS, RD, Anne Wolf & Associates
TOS is proud to have participated in this effort as part of its Treat Obesity Seriously campaign, an effort to encourage the treatment of obesity as a disease and support healthcare providers in their work with people affected by obesity and overweight.

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Capitol Update: Obesity Care Continuum Converges on Washington (Again)
TOS
In early December, TOS leaders joined others from the Obesity Care Continuum to meet with key policymakers at both federal and state levels. Nearly 15 advocate leaders shared concerns for patient access to obesity treatment services with staff in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Health Reform (OHR) and Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO). Government officials were provided with several examples of discriminatory benefit design language being employed by qualified health plans (QHPs). These ranged from procedure lifetime limits and prohibitive patient cost-sharing provisions to clear violations of pre-existing condition protections outlined under the ACA.

In addition, OCC leaders visited with a number of Republican House members to encourage additional GOP cosponsors on the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act (TROA), which would provide Medicare beneficiaries and their health care providers with meaningful tools to treat and reduce obesity. Read more about these efforts and many other on Capitol Hill in the December update here.

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TOS & IASO Are Seeking an Editor-in-Chief for New Obesity Journal
TOS
The Obesity Society and our partner, the International Association for the Study of Obesity (IASO), are recruiting a founding Editor-in-Chief for a new joint open-access obesity journal, published by Wiley. This new journal will publish original research, reviews and perspectives on all disciplines related to obesity.

Applications are welcomed from those working in the field of obesity, and the deadline for submitting your CV and cover letter is January 31, 2014. For full details please read the job description.

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New York Governor Cuomo Launches Anti-Hunger Task Force, Appoints TOS Leader
TOS
In early December, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced the creation of the New York State Anti-Hunger Task Force, bringing together experts, advocates and state and local officials to combat hunger and improve access to locally grown and produced fresh foods. He said "this effort will be a key resource and tool in ongoing efforts to eliminate hunger in New York" in a statement.

As one of its top priorities, the new task force lists improving access to quality, healthy food through the use of New York farm products and locally produced goods to combat hunger while creating jobs and supporting economic development.

Stephen Cook, MD, member of The Obesity Society Advocacy Committee and Professor at the University of Rochester Medical Center adds his name to the many leading experts appointed to the Committee.

"I do hope we can bring these creative groups and partnerships together to serve these needy families and children," said Dr. Cook. "The goal is to not only address hunger but also obesity and food insecurity, because we know they are so tightly linked."

Read more about the task force and appointees here.

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Weight-Bias Increases Risk for Depression, Anxiety, Poor Health and Greater Health Care Utilization
TOS
Tackling weight bias is a priority in 2014 for the Advocacy and Public Affairs Committees of The Obesity Society. A new article by Hilbert et al. in the Obesity journal examines internalized weight bias, self-evaluation, and health outcomes in a representative sample of German adults affected by overweight or obesity. Those with higher internalized weight bias were found to be at greater risk for depression, anxiety, poor health, and higher health care utilization, and the association was mediated by self-evaluation (i.e. self-esteem, self-efficacy, and neuroticism). Clinical implications indicate a need to focus on self-stigma and self-evaluation in addition to internalized weight bias in order to improve psychological and physical health. Find out more in the full study published online here.
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Exercise Without Dietary Changes Can Improve Body Composition
TOS
The goal of any weight loss program is ultimately improved health. However, often a favorable change in body composition with weight loss is preferred, such as the loss of and maintenance of reduced fat mass.

While the use of exercise for weight loss has not always shown positive results, a recent study published in the Obesity journal sheds new light on this topic. Carnero et al. randomized 45 overweight women into one of three, five-month exercise training groups (60 min/day, 3/week) with no intentional dietary intervention: aerobic training only (AT), resistance training only (RT), and AT+RT. After training, mean body weight did not decrease significantly across groups, but all groups significantly reduced total and regional (upper and lower limb, and trunk) fat mass as assessed by DXA, or Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. These reductions were not influenced by training type and fat-free mass was maintained or gained in all groups.

This new research suggests that while exercise training may not result in weight loss for all without dietary intervention, it can lead to positive changes in body composition. Additionally, the type of exercise should be pleasurable to the individual in order to encourage long-term adherence. Read the full article to find out more here.

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ABOM Welcomes CON-RCO as New Partner to Improve Obesity Treatment Standards
TOS
The American Board of Obesity Medicine (ABOM) recently announced the support of the Canadian Obesity Network — Réseau canadien en obésité (CON-RCO) as a partnering organization.

"CON-RCO has been influential in improving the care of overweight and obese patients throughout Canada. By offering ABOM certification, they are raising the competency standards of physicians who wish to become distinguished in the field of obesity medicine," said Dr. Robert Kushner, Chair of the American Board of Obesity Medicine and Professor of Medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

ABOM has seen a 33% increase in the number of Canadian physician candidates from 2012 to 2013, which reinforces the importance of the partnership. Find out more about the partnership here.

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OAC Welcomes Ted Kyle as Chairman, Announces New Board Members for 2014
TOS
The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) recently welcomed Ted Kyle, RPh, MBA, as Chairman of the Coalition. "As a longtime OAC member, recipient of the 2012 OAC 'Member of the Year' award and frequent Your Weight Matters Magazine author, Ted has consistently provided the OAC with dedication, knowledge and obesity-focused expertise," the organization said in a press release.

"I hope my service can complement the passion and determination of all our members," said Kyle, who is a strong advocate for the obesity community, having also served in leadership roles at The Obesity Society for many years. He has served on the OAC National Board of Directors since 2010 and was named vice-chairman of the Coalition in early 2013.

The OAC also welcomes Tammy Beaumont, BSN, RN, CBN; Walter Medlin, MD, FACS; and Melinda J. Watman, BSN, MSN, CNM, MBA, to the 2014 OAC National Board of Directors. Find out more in the OAC press release here.

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OBESITY IN THE NEWS


Obesity quadruples to nearly a billion in developing world
Gulf Daily News
The number of overweight and obese adults in the developing world has almost quadrupled to around one billion since 1980, says a report from a UK think tank. The Overseas Development Institute said one in three people worldwide was now overweight and urged governments to do more to influence diets.
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Easy, healthy resolutions for 2014
USA Today
The new year motivates you to make healthy changes. You may feel ambitious now, but to help your resolutions stick past February, start with small changes that you can incorporate into your everyday life.
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Obesity levels off, but extreme cases tipping the scales
Detroit Free Press
There are signs that Americans overall are getting a grip on their expanding waistlines for the first time in decades. But before anyone becomes too optimistic, the flip side is a significant jump in Americans who edged into the worrisome category of extremely obese.
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People with obesity have to pay for Obamacare up to 30 percent more
The Voice of Russia
Under Obamacare, smoking, obesity and some other health conditions can force even those with employer-provided insurance to pay more, Fox News reports citing an officer of the National Union of Healthcare Workers. Ted Kyle, RPh, MBA, an Obesity Society spokesperson and former advocacy chair, shared with the Voice of Russia his view on this issue.
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Meaningful, long-term weight loss is possible: Look AHEAD
Medscape
The 8-year weight-loss results from the Look AHEAD: Action for Health in Diabetes study of overweight or obese patients with type 2 diabetes suggest it is possible to lose and keep weight off with a program of intensive lifestyle counseling, researchers report in an article published online Jan. 2 in Obesity.
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The future of obesity treatment: What works
Healthline
As many of us take on New Year's resolutions to shed pounds, a new study shows which types of treatment work best. The study offers long-term data to support the use of intensive lifestyle intervention as a viable weight loss tool.
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5 myths and misunderstandings about obesity
The Denver Post
The obesity epidemic is among the most critical health issues facing the United States. Although it has generated a lot of attention and calls for solutions, it also has served up a super-sized portion of myths and misunderstandings.
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Congratulations on the success of the 1st annual ObesityWeek
Bariatric Times
Dear Friends, Colleagues and Readers of Bariatric Times,

I hope you all had a wonderful thanksgiving holiday surrounded by dear friends and family. I would like to start my editorial message by congratulating the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) Program Committee, chaired by Dr. Ninh Nguyen and Georgeann Mallory, Executive Director of ASMBS. The scientific program and organization of ObesityWeek 2013 conference in Atlanta, Georgia was excellent. I would also like to extend my most sincere congratulations to Dr. Phil Schauer who had the vision to put together this unique meeting. I personally was reluctant to change our growing June conference and felt this might be a mistake and too risky, but Phil clearly showed me that I was wrong. This was the largest gathering ever (over 4,800 attendees) that united medical, surgical, and allied healthcare obesity specialists from around the globe.

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The Obesity Society eNews
Mollie Turner, News Editor, The Obesity Society  
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Disclaimer: eNews is a digest of the most important news selected for The Obesity Society from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs, an independent organization that also manages and sells advertising. The Obesity Society does not endorse any of the advertised products and services. Opinions expressed in the articles are those of the author and not of The Obesity Society.

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