Obese US firefighters report receiving no weight advice from their health provider

July 11, 2014

Obese and overweight firefighters are not receiving weight management advice from their health care providers, according to new research from The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

National guidelines state that health care professionals (HCPs) should advise patients on the importance of maintaining a healthy . Firefighters have high rates of , and cardiovascular events are the leading cause of line-of-duty deaths in . This study assessed the association of age and body mass index (BMI) with HCP weight recommendations among male firefighters.

Researchers used data on self-reported HCP weight recommendations and measured BMI from a 2011–2012 national sample of male firefighters. HCP recommendations were recorded as no advice, maintain, gain, or lose weight, and BMI was categorized as normal, overweight, class I obese, and class II or III obese. We used multinomial logistic regression to estimate the odds of receiving weight advice by age and BMI categories.

Most firefighters (96 percent) reported visiting an HCP in the past year. Most (69 percent) firefighters and 48 percent of class I to III obese firefighters reported receiving no weight advice. Higher BMI predicted HCP advice to lose weight. Younger firefighters were less likely to receive weight loss than older firefighters, except among those who were class II or III obese.

The study was published today in the Center for Disease Control's journal Preventing Chronic Disease.

Explore further: No sign of 'obesity paradox' in obese patients with stroke

More information: Wilkinson ML, Brown AL, Poston WS, Haddock CK, Jahnke SA, Day RS. Physician Weight Recommendations for Overweight and Obese Firefighters, United States, 2011–2012. Prev Chronic Dis 2014;11:140091. DOI: 10.5888/pcd11.140091

Related Stories

No sign of 'obesity paradox' in obese patients with stroke

June 2, 2014
Researchers found no evidence of an "obesity paradox" (some studies have suggested overweight or obese patients have lower mortality rates than underweight or normal weight patients) in patients with stroke.

Women who gain too much or too little weight during pregnancy at risk for having an overweight child

April 14, 2014
Gaining both too much or too little weight during pregnancy appears to increase the risk of having an overweight or obese child, according to a Kaiser Permanente study published today in the American Journal of Obstetrics ...

Obese patients trust diet advice from overweight physicians more than normal-weight physicians

June 4, 2013
When it comes to taking diet advice from a physician—size matters. This is according to a new study led by a team of researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Johns Hopkins University School ...

Physician's weight may influence obesity diagnosis and care

January 26, 2012
A patient's body mass index (BMI) may not be the only factor at play when a physician diagnoses a patient as obese. According to a new study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the diagnosis ...

Carrying extra weight could be healthier for older people

March 25, 2014
(Medical Xpress)—Older people with a BMI (body mass index) in the overweight range live longer, according to the results of a new study.

Overweight pregnant women not getting proper weight-gain advice

December 10, 2012
Overweight women are not receiving proper advice on healthy weight gains or appropriate exercise levels during their pregnancies, according to Penn State College of Medicine researchers.

Recommended for you

Are sugary drink interventions changing people's behaviour?

July 19, 2017
An evaluation of efforts designed to reduce how many sugary drinks we consume shows some success in changing younger people's habits but warns they cannot be the only way to cut consumption.

Young adult obesity: A neglected, yet essential focus to reverse the obesity epidemic

July 18, 2017
The overall burden of the U.S. obesity epidemic continues to require new thinking. Prevention of obesity in young adults, while largely ignored as a target for prevention and study, will be critical to reversing the epidemic, ...

Weight gain from early to middle adulthood may increase risk of major chronic diseases

July 18, 2017
Cumulative weight gain over the course of early and middle adulthood may increase health risks later in life, according to a new study led by researchers from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. They found that, compared ...

Study finds children carry implicit bias towards peers who are overweight

June 23, 2017
Even children as young as 9 years old can carry a prejudice against their peers who are overweight, according to a new study led by Duke Health researchers. They might not even realize they feel this way.

Mother's obesity boosts risk for major birth defects: study

June 15, 2017
Children of obese women are more likely to be afflicted by major birth defects, including malformations of the heart and genitals, according to a study published on Thursday.

New study finds more than 2 billion people overweight or obese

June 12, 2017
Globally, more than 2 billion children and adults suffer from health problems related to being overweight or obese, and an increasing percentage of people die from these health conditions, according to a new study.

2 comments

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

alfie_null
not rated yet Jul 12, 2014
Why do firefighters have higher rates of obesity?

How effective is receiving health care provider advice?
Forestgnome
not rated yet Jul 13, 2014
They don't know they're fat without an expert telling them?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.