Bear with me. This may seem silly, but please go to a mirror and repeat this phrase: “It is not my fault. My weight and obesity are not my fault.”  This mantra is one of the core principals I want to bestow on my patients. It may seem shocking to you that as a doctor and medical professional I’m telling you that obesity isn’t your fault. But it’s because I understand that there are many factors that contribute to the disease of obesity — and willpower, self-control, or personality traits are not those factors.

The numbers of patients that come in and talk to me about the discrimination they’ve faced firsthand, well, it’s heartbreaking. The looks that you receive in the grocery store, on the airplane, or out to eat, you don’t deserve them. It’s not right. And it’s not your fault. Your obesity is not your fault. You cannot control your weight if you don’t know about your hyperactive thyroid or imbalanced digestive system or allergy to eggs.

But it’s not enough to know it’s not your fault. Now you must find out why you’re not able to lose weight. What is preventing you from conquering obesity? So, rather than treating obesity as just a weight disease, I want to find the underlying medical conditions that contribute to the disease and work to alleviate those factors first. Once we know why you’re not losing weight, we can get started on correcting imbalances and start watching the pounds drop off.

To get started on your personalized weight-loss journey, register and receive a copy of Stop Dying Fat: Doctors Healing the Disease of Obesity.