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Obesity Strategies: What Can Be Done

At a glance

Obesity is a complex and costly chronic disease with many contributing factors. Access to healthy, affordable foods and safe, convenient places for physical activity can impact obesity. Addressing obesity requires organizations and people to work together to create communities, environments, and systems that support healthy, active lifestyles for all.

Woman wearing a mask and buying vegetables at a grocery store.

The federal government is:

Some states and communities are:

Two priority obesity-prevention strategies for state and local programs are:

In addition, state and local programs are:

Health Care providers can:

  • Measure patients' weight and height, calculate body mass index, and counsel them on its role in disease prevention.
  • Refer patients with obesity to intensive programs, including Family Healthy Weight and Diabetes Prevention programs.
  • Counsel patients about nutrition, physical activity, and optimal sleep.
  • Use respectful and non-stigmatizing, person-first language in all weight-related discussions.
  • Connect patients and families with community services to help them access healthy foods and ways to be active.
  • Discuss the use of medications and other treatments for excess weight.
  • Seek continuing medical education about obesity.
Man getting a serving of fruit from a large bowl.
Healthy eating patterns include plenty of fruits and vegetables.

Everyone can take steps to:

  • Eat healthy foods and drink healthy beverages, following the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Use:
  • Get the recommended amount of physical activity.
  • Get enough sleep.
  • Manage stress.
  • Talk to your health care provider about whether weight is a health concern. If so, discuss available obesity treatment options to help reduce potential health risks.
  • Get involved in local efforts, such as local committees and councils, to improve options for healthier foods and physical activity.