Obesity – More and more young people are affected | DO | 21 10 2021 | 16:05

Radio Doctor – Medicine and Health

The number of those affected by pathological obesity is steadily increasing. Every second person over 15 in Austria is overweight and every third person is obese. Even with children, 25 percent weigh too much. Anyone who has a BMI value over 30 is considered obese, while one is overweight from a value of 25.
The pandemic has exacerbated the situation. The school closings in the lockdowns led to an additional lack of exercise, and more meals were consumed. A study from Korea shows: The children who were already obese before Covid-19 gained an average of around four kilos.

Influencer launches Social Media Campaign

As more and more young people are affected, the Austrian Obesity Society has started a campaign on social media together with influencers. The topic of obesity should be brought back to the fore. Unfortunately, very little has happened in recent years, complains Univ.-Prof. Dr. Florian Kiefer. He is a specialist in internal medicine at the Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism at the Medical University of Vienna.
On Instagram and Co. in particular, young people are often fooled into a world of illusion with edited images. Bikini photos of actually underweight people convey an unrealistic body image.
People who are heavier are bullied. Bianca Kübler, the young woman behind the social media account Curves & Edges, is part of the current campaign. She wants to convey a clear message: “Be worth taking care of yourself!” So to feel good in your body, but also to eat properly, do sports and lose weight when necessary.

Train online with a specially developed program

Personal trainer Otmane Kabietadiko, better known as Oti on social media, also took part in the campaign. Due to his career as a professional football player, he was overweight and had to change his life due to an injury. He developed a fitness program and lost weight without reducing his athletic performance. He runs a fitness studio, offers online workouts and shares nutrition tips and expert interviews on the subject of weight loss on his social media account.

More than an unhealthy lifestyle

Many people are not aware that several factors, such as genetics, hormones and social environment, play a role in being overweight and that there is often more to it than a lack of exercise and poor nutrition. Obesity is classified as a disease by the WHO – but it is sometimes not handled that way by medicine, but overweight is classified as a lifestyle problem. Obesity is the only “widespread disease” in Austria for which therapies are not reimbursed. The Austrian Obesity Society therefore calls on decision-makers to take steps against the “obesity pandemic”.

OP can be a sustainable solution

Of course, the psyche also plays a major role in obesity. The clinical and health psychologist Barbara Andersen specializes in obesity. She heads a self-help group at the Vienna General Hospital, prepares reports for people who are undergoing gastric reduction surgery and looks after those affected after the procedure. This subsequent accompaniment is particularly important because the eating behavior does not automatically change with the operation. “We were operated on in the stomach and not in the head,” says the psychologist, who decided to have a stomach reduction done a few years ago. The decision for such an operation is often not easy, but for many people it is the most sustainable solution.

New drug on hold

Drug therapies are another option. Above all, however, these should support a change in lifestyle. The substance semaglutide appears particularly exciting. It is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonist and provides an increase in satiety and a decrease in appetite. Semaglutide is currently only approved for the treatment of diabetes in Austria. Soon it will also be possible to prescribe it for the indication of obesity.

This time Univ.-Prof. Dr. Markus Hengstschläger on the subject of obesity and modern strategies against it.

Moderation: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Markus Hengstschläger
Shipment preparation: Lydia Sprinzl, MA

Have a say too! We look forward to your questions and suggestions. Our number: 0800/22 69 79, free of charge from all over Austria.

Are you or your children affected by obesity?
How are you doing with that? Have you had any experience with stigma? Have you been professionally disadvantaged?
Have you been overweight and got your weight under control? W.
Would you have stomach reduction surgery?
Do you already have experience with drug therapy?


Connected by phone:

Assoc. Prof. Priv.-Doz. Dr. Florian Kiefer, PhD
MedUni Vienna
University Clinic for Internal Medicine III
Clinical Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism
Board member of the Austrian Obesity Society
Währinger belt 18-20
1090 Wien
Tel.: +43 (0)1 40400/72690

Bianca Kübler
Influencer “Curves & Edges”

Otmane “Oti” Kabietadiko
Personal trainer “Skillbeast”

Mag.a Barbara Andersen
Clinical and health psychologist
Head of Obesity Surgery Self-Help Group Vienna General Hospital
Kaiserstrasse 43 / 4a
1070 Wien
Tel.: 0699 813 813 75

Further contact points and information links:

Austrian Obesity Society
Self-help group obesity Austria
Obesity surgery self-help group AKH Vienna
Social Media Kampagne Adiposity
Obesity Center Sisters of Mercy
Gesundheit.gv.at: Obesity
Minimed study: obesity
Quarks: This is why people get overweight
Ärzteblatt: Semaglutid: The price of losing weight
Study on the state of health of the Austrian population: overweight people are on the rise
Robert Koch Institute: Focus on overweight and obesity
Worldwide study of the health effects of overweight and obesity over the past 25 years
German Federal Ministry for Research and Education: How parents influence the weight of their children
German Nutrition Society: Eat and drink whole foods
AGES online tool: Food under the microscope

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