Resources for Physicians
The AMA has developed several resources to help physicians and their staff help patients achieve and maintain a healthy body weight.
The AMA's Weigh What Matters program is designed to support and enhance the dialogue between physicians and their patients about weight and how it impacts their health and their family’s health. Physicians can access resources and materials to help patients set and achieve healthy eating and physical activity goals.
Earn AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™
The AMA has developed a set of continuing medical education activities to help physicians help their adult patients promote healthy eating and physical activity for themselves and their children. Included are two video modules, a more detailed monograph, and patient handouts.
Guide on how to talk with your patients about their weight This includes:
- The importance of having a conversation
- Broaching the topic of obesity
- Putting the conversation into words
- Common questions from patients
- Referring for additional weight loss services
- When should a patient be considered for medication therapy?
- When should a patient be considered for weight-loss surgery?
This program provides information and tools to help physicians support their patients' efforts around four key health behaviors: healthy eating, physical activity, smoking cessation, and reduction of risky drinking. It contains a Physicians' Guide as well as patient education and goal-tracking materials. The program also provides a guide to help physicians improve their own health behaviors.
The AMA collaborated with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to produce a series of online publications entitled "Roadmaps for Clinical Practice – Case Studies in Disease Prevention and Health Promotion." Roadmaps help physicians and other health professionals integrate disease prevention and health promotion into routine clinical care.
"Assessment and Management of Adult Obesity" consists of ten booklets that offer practical recommendations for addressing adult obesity in the primary care setting.
The AMA has produced a series of short educational videos to inform physicians about the challenges and controversies at the interface of clinical medicine and public health and to offer possible strategies to address these issues in their practices. CME credit is available for some programs. Relevant topics include:
- Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans
- Motivating Patients to Change Behavior
- Connecting Patients to Community Resources
- Paying Attention to Preventing Cardiovascular Disease among Racial and Ethnic Minorities
- Addressing Language Barriers between Physician and Patient: What are the Optimal Strategies?
- Health Care Disparities
This guide provides coding information for routine adult lifestyle screening, early intervention, and motivational interviewing.
Find out how the AMA's Advocacy Resource Center is involved in creating healthier environments to better support individual healthy behavior choices.
The AMA develops policy positions on how the health care system should be organized and how it should function. Search through the AMA's policies related to obesity, weight management, healthy eating, and physical activity.
This AMA-developed educational piece provides expert opinions on energy homeostasis and the root metabolic causes of obesity, the clinical impact of obesity, the importance of obesity prevention, treatments that can reduce associated health risks, and the impact of obesity on healthcare insurance providers.
The National Summit on Obesity was convened by the AMA to develop a set of strategies to help physicians more effectively work with their patients and the community to reduce overweight and obesity and to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in childhood obesity. Leaders in the fields of preventive health, pediatrics, family practice, nutrition, and worksite and school health participated in the summit.
Additional resources for physicians related to obesity, weight management, healthy eating, and physical activity are provided by the following organizations.
The Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity is a non-profit research and public policy organization devoted to improving the world's diet, preventing obesity, and reducing weight stigma.
The following are resources for physicians on how to talk with their patients about weight management:
- Motivational Interviewing Strategies
- Motivational Interview Example Scripts
- Preventing Weight Bias: Helping Without Harming in Clinical Practice
Nutrition in Medicine provides online nutrition education for medical students, residents, fellows, and other healthcare professionals.
This US Department of Agriculture (USDA) site has resources about dietary guidelines, sample menus, recipes and daily food plans that professionals can share with their patients.
This Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) site provides facts about diseases, conditions and other risk factors associated with excess weight that you can share with your patients.
This US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) site outlines the types and amounts of physical activity needed to improve health and reduce risk of disease in Americans age six and older.
The US National Physical Activity Plan is a comprehensive set of policies, programs and initiatives aimed at increasing physical activity in all segments of the American population. The Plan is the product of a collaboration between the private and public sectors, with hundreds of organizations working together to help communities enable every American to be sufficiently physically active.
This site provides guides, articles and news about healthy eating and information about how to engage registered dietitians.
The American Society for Nutrition provides information and resources for physicians interested in nutrition and the role of nutrition in medical education, practice and research.
This site provides access to a wide variety of heart-health related statistics and research, including practice guidelines and clinical updates.
The Obesity Action Coalition's site provides information about how to advise patients about weight loss, strategies for behavior modification, descriptions of commercial weight loss programs and an overview of bariatric surgery.