President and CEO of the Peeke Performance Center for Healthy Living and Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Maryland
Pro to the question "Is Obesity a Disease?"
"Does obesity fit the strict definition of a disease? According to Mosby's Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, & Health Professions, a disease is: 1. a condition of abnormal vital function involving any structure, part, or system of an organism; 2. a specific illness or disorder characterized by a recognizable set of signs and symptoms attributable to heredity, infection, diet, or environment. Answer? It fits.
Moreover, as a physician who, like my medical brethren, has had to resort to creative diagnostic coding to work with people in the field of weight management, I'm hoping that now, with a disease designation, these people will be able to have insurance to help defer some of the costs associated with obesity. This is particularly true of those who, on paper and exam, do not yet have the metabolic syndrome, but are clearly obese and seeking help.
Further, it is important that the medical community as well as the public and insurers drop their stereotypic perceptions of those who are obese, and elevate the obese condition to that of other disease conditions along with respect for those who are suffering."
Statement to Prevention Magazine, "Is Obesity a Disease? Prevention Experts Weigh In," www.prevention.com, June 2013
Experts Individuals with MDs; individuals with PhDs or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to obesity and health; top-level federal government officials with significant involvement in obesity-related health issues. [Note: Experts definition varies by site.]
Involvement and Affiliations:
President and CEO, Peeke Performance Center for Healthy Living, Jan. 2006-present
Fellow, American College of Physicians (FACP)
Assistant Clinical Professor, School of Medicine, Division of Complementary Medicine, University of Maryland, 1996-present
Adjunct Senior Scientist, National Institutes of Health, Howard Hughes Foundation, 1996-present
Lecturer, Medical School, School of Public Health, Disease Prevention, 1996-present
Clinical Lecturer, Medical Center School of Medicine, Masters in Public Health Graduate Program, George Washington University, 1996-present
Assistant Clinical Professor, Department of Medicine, University of Arizona, 1996-present
Adjunct Fellow, Ceres Forum on Food and Nutrition Policy, George Washington University, 1993-present
Senior Research Fellow, Office of Alternative Medicine, National Institutes of Health, 1995
Recipient, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development National Research Science Fellowship Award, 1996
Recipient, Intramural Research Training Fellowship Award, National Institutes of Health, 1996
Recipient, Intramural Research Training Award, National Institutes of Health, Child Health and Human Development, Developmental Endocrinology Branch, 1994
Recipient, Solvay Pharmaceuticals Research Award, Clinical Protocol, University of California at Davis, 1990
Recipient, Pew Foundation Post-doctoral Scholarship in Nutrition and Metabolism, University of California at Davis, 1989
Editorial Board Member, MEDICA, Journal of Practicing Women M.D.'s, 1985
Graduated, nutrition sciences doctoral program, University of California at Davis, 1990
MD, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, 1980
MPH, Medical Care Policy and Administration, University of California at Berkeley, 1976
BS, Cellular Biology, University of California at Berkeley, 1974