In this years Obesity Week, Ogweno Stephen was in a panel which was jointly produced by The Obesity Society (TOS) Obesity Canada (0C), European Association for the Study of Obesity (EASO), and World Obesity Federation (WOF). In this session Ogweno Stephen was part of the team that provided a global overview of how COVID-19 has impacted the lives of people living with obesity. EASO shared the results of its comprehensive European Study, with 3000 participants across 10 countries, and WOF presented highlights of its survey to show how the organizations’ members have perceived and dealt with the pandemic. The main part of the session was a lively roundtable discussion among 4 different obesity patients including Ogweno Stephen living in different parts of the world where we shared the challenges, difficulties, fears and learnings from our personal experience during the pandemic.
One of the key takeaways from the session was that obesity is a disease that is complex and that required active management. Often in obesity care and management individuals relapse o treatment and that was mentioned as being totally ok. The session really emphasized also that people living with obesity are first human and should be treated as such citing the stigmatization that surrounds obesity.