Now, the American Medical Association has decided to recognize how dangerous it really is, giving it the label of disease.
Those who suffer from obesity know all too well the stigma that comes with it.
"I use to be morbidly obese until i had the lap band surgery which I'm 5 years out and keeping the weight off so I've lived the life of the obese and i understand the health problems and the way you feel and the bias's that are out there against obese people," says Alta Beegle, Bariatric Coordinator at Flowers Hospital.
With the new disease classification, people can recognize how threatening obesity is and the dangers that come along with it.
"Primarily we see diabetes, and we see heart disease, there are risk factors associated with stroke, " Jaime Sharp, Registered Dietician at Flowers Hospital.
"There are studies that show that if you have 2 types of a certain gene from your parents that you have a 67% chance of becoming morbidly obese. Genetic loads the gun and the environment pulls the trigger. Everything is super sized from what it was years ago," says Beegle.
Here in the Wiregrass we have the means to work together to make healthy lifestyle changes and fight this disease.
"As a community we start here, we live in a great place with local farmers markets available, every single week, fresh produce, things that we know are naturally are high in vitamins and minerals," says Sharp.
"People that are passionate about seeing the public getting good useful information in their hands, its going to take us rallying together to make sure that people do have knowledge".
"There's lots of material available at no cost, they can come up to the center and pick it up and put it in a bag and give it to them and just say read this when you have the time, i love you and i care about you and you'd be surprised that you just might save that persons life, "says Beegle.
Nationally, we have programs like More Matters which says more fruits and vegetables, equal better health.
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