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      Battling Obesity: Is it a disease?

      Obesity affects more than one-third of all U.S. adults and has led the American Medical Association to label it a disease.

      â??There are more and more studies coming out about the chemical role within your brain on appetite and intake,â?? said registered dietician, Andrea Millan.

      So from a medical standpoint, this label could mean more insurance coverage, other options for weight management, and changes in stigmas associated with obesity. â??It makes it much more of a serious condition to be aware of. We can really have more treatment availability for patients to be able to work on this and improve other health conditions that are associated with their weight status,â?? Millan said.

      After obesity received a new label, however, some questions arose regarding the role of personal responsibility and discipline when it comes to weight management, because for some people, battling obesity is a journey. A journey personal trainer Ellette Nyman says started two years ago.

      â??My seven-year-old son was diagnosed with type 1 Diabetes,â?? said Nyman. â??How can I ask a seven year old to do what I was not willing to do, which was controlling what I was eating?â??

      Elette lost over 100 pounds as a result of her lifestyle change and personal training, which she said was more mental than anything.

      â??Itâ??s not what you eat, it's why. Nobody forces you to eat a bag of Cheetos,â?? Nyman said. â??Obesity is a consequence of the choices that you make, but it's why you're making those choices that's the problem.â??

      So, as a personal trainer who's struggled with weight, Ellette can, in turn, encourage others.

      â??Nobody wants to be overweight. Nobody wants to be labeled obese. It hurts; it hurts bad,â?? Nyman said. â??You won't lose 100 pounds until you've lost one. Losing weight is 100 percent mental; you have to want it more than anything else.â??

      So with new medical attention to obesity, alongside a lifestyle change, some may finally be able to take the first steps to a healthy life.