HBO’s ‘Weight of the Nation’ examines the obesity epidemic

A compelling four-part documentary delving into the obesity epidemic sweeping the country is being aired on HBO and can be watched free by clicking here. A reporter wanting to write a series of stories on the issue would find “weight of the Nation” a good reference.

The program is divided into four parts. The first segment, “Consequences,” looks at the scope of the epidemic and the ramifications of being overweight or obese. “Choices” looks at the science behind how to lose weight, how to maintain weight loss and prevent weight gain. The third part, “Children in Crisis,” looks at how the problem is affecting American children, exploring the decline of physical activity, school lunch, the demise of school recess and how marketing of unhealthy food targets children. The final segment, “Challenges,” looks at the major forces driving obesity, including agriculture, economics, evolutionary biology, food marketing, racial and socioeconomic disparities, physical inactivity, American food culture, and the influence of the food and beverage industries.

The documentary is on a detailed website that answers questions that range from “What is obesity?” to “How do I know if I’m overweight or obese?”

The project is a presentation of HBO and the Institute of Medicine in association with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health, with support from the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation and health insurer Kaiser Permanente.

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