The 5th edition of the campaign “Let’s talk honestly about obesity” has started. Famous actors are among the Ambassadors

The 5th edition of the campaign "Let's talk honestly about obesity" has started. Famous actors are among the Ambassadors

On June 19, the 5th edition of the nationwide educational campaign “Let’s talk honestly about obesity” was launched. The campaign will continue to change the perception of obesity among Polish women and men and dispel harmful stereotypes.

This year’s edition is held under the slogan: “Honestly about obesity. With love” and emphasizes the key role of empathetic communication and family support in the prevention, diagnosis and comprehensive treatment of obesity. The new edition, in addition to the topic of the disease among adults, also touches for the first time on the issue of obesity among children and adolescents. The heroes of this year’s campaign are, among others, actors Kacper Łukasiewicz, Bartłomiej Nowosielski and Robert Kudelski.

The largest wave of illnesses in Europe

According to WHO, Polish children and teenagers are gaining weight the fastest in Europe(1). It is estimated that overweight and obesity, which is the most common disorder of physical development, affects about 10% of the youngest children (1–3 years old), 25% of three-year-olds, 33% of children of early school age and almost 22% of youth up to 15 years of age(2):

We have just crossed the threshold of a health catastrophe in Poland: at the moment, there are already 9 million adult Poles suffering from obesity (3). Every year, there are also about 400,000 children and adolescents with excess body weight – this may mean that the young generation will statistically live shorter lives than their parents and grandparents. Obesity in the youngest population contributes to the early development of many complications that were once “reserved” mainly for adults: type II diabetes, hypertension, but also insulin resistance, sleep apnea and metabolic disorders. In addition, there are psychological consequences, such as depression – underlines Prof. Dr. Hab. n. med. Lucyna Ostrowskapresident of the Polish Society for the Treatment of Obesity, substantive patron of the campaign.

Parents, grandparents and guardians – the first line of support

Stopping such a dynamic wave of illnesses among children and adolescents is a huge challenge. Support from parents and guardians plays an important role here, which is why the 5th edition of the campaign will emphasize the role of the family in prevention, diagnosis and comprehensive treatment of obesity in the population of young people.

Family, as the smallest social unit, is the first place where eating habits and those related to physical activity are shaped. The role of caregivers is extremely important, but effective support in obesity can be provided by every family member – including grandparents, sisters, brothers, spouses, or life partners. Patients often share with us, doctors, the reflection that the people they care for and who care for them are the best motivation to face obesity. and taking care of its prevention – he adds prof. Lucyna Ostrowska.

Young Actor on the Stigmatization of Obesity

This year’s Ambassadors include Kacper Łukasiewicz, an actor and law student. He got involved in the campaign to raise awareness of the harmful stigma that affects young people struggling with obesity:

– I am 21 years old and I have been struggling with obesity for as long as I can remember – it started around primary school. And although my disease is now in remission, I know it can come back. As a child, I experienced painful online hate. I started playing the role of Kuba in a popular TV series when I was 5 years old. Over the years, viewers watched me grow up on the set. The topic of my excessive body weight became the subject of attacks on one of the social networking sites. Groups with tens of thousands of people were created: they were mainly adults who knew neither me nor the history of my illness, and yet my appearance was a pretext for verbal violence. They used words against me that I could not forget for a long time. And they suggested to my parents that my body weight was “the result of their irresponsibility”, that “they should lock the fridge”, that “they can make me crippled”, meanwhile I was under constant medical care, my parents were very supportive. I want to tell other young people that they are not alone with obesity. underlines Kacper Lukasiewiczactor and ambassador of the campaign “Let’s talk honestly about obesity.

Demystifying the Language Around Obesity

This year’s campaign slogan, “Honestly about obesity. With love,” emphasizes the role of conversation in an honest and safe atmosphere that can be positively motivating, and a patient surrounded by empathy and family love has more strength to face the disease.

That is why the other Ambassadors of the new campaign want to share their experiences with obesity openly: an actor and a father of two daughters, Bartholomew Nowosielski, actor Robert Kudelskand the patient and teacher: Emilia Modrzynska. A health psychologist also joined the mission of social education as an ambassador, Adrianna Sobol.

As part of this year’s campaign, practical educational tools will also be created, including “PoMOCnik dla Rodzice i karów”, a study prepared with the involvement of an interdisciplinary group of experts. It will contain recommendations on eating habits, physical activity, psychological and medical support for those looking for tips on how to support their child on the way to achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight.

Campaign Information:

The aim of the campaign “Let’s talk honestly about obesity” is to build public awareness that obesity is a disease that can lead to the development of over 200 complications and significantly threaten the life and health of the patient. The campaign is organized by Novo Nordisk. In June 2024, the 5th edition of the campaign was launched under the slogan “Honestly about obesity. With love”, which focuses on building open and empathetic communication about obesity and people affected by it. Its aim is also to draw attention to the key role of family support in the prevention, diagnosis and comprehensive treatment of obesity: both in the adult generation and in the youth.

(1) WHO Childhood Obesity Surveillance Initiative.

2(2)Data provided by professor dr hab. n. med. Artur Mazur – Head of the 2nd Clinic of Pediatrics, Endocrinology and Pediatric Diabetology, Provincial Hospital No. 2 named after St. Jadwiga the Queen in Rzeszów. Also: Weker H, Barańska M, Riahi A, Strucińska M, Więch M, et al. Dietary patterns in toddlers with excess weight. The 2016 PITNUTS study. Dev Period Med 2017; 21(3): 272–285.

3(3) NIK: Prevention and treatment of obesity in adults, 2023.

This sponsored article was created in cooperation with Novo Nordisk, the patron of the educational campaign Let’s talk honestly about obesity.

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