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Pediatr Ann. 1992 Oct;21(10):647-52.

Myths about childhood obesity.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts.


Childhood obesity is a multifactorial and complex disease. Myths such as those that we have described may distract our patients from the underlying behaviors that contribute to the disease or may deflect the blame perceived by obese patients and their parents. Myths that suggest that the obese are inactive, eat differently, or eat more junk food suggest that obese individuals are socially deviant and justifies the intense discrimination directed against them. The myth that obesity represents an untreatable disease helps free health-care professionals from the responsibility to understand and care for obese children. Dispelling the myths about childhood obesity represents a critical step in prevention and treatment.

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