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Adriane Mary’s story

Adriane Mary’s story

Obesity took my father's life in 2018. I was in the second month of my first postgraduate degree in nutrology (a medical specialty in Brazil focused on treating eating disorders).

He was already hypertensive, diabetic, with osteoarticular lesions, and had sleep apnea. He had most of the complications that obesity brings. And he was a doctor; he knew much more about them than I did, who had graduated in medicine just 3 years ago. But despite some attempts to lose weight, without proper professional follow-up, he evolved with complications, and in 2018 he died.

Since then, I have already completed my fourth nutrology course. I now work in the public health system in Brazil, in the Family Health Strategy program, which annually invites physicians to work in more remote areas of the country and provide primary care in Basic Health Units. My work involves screening patients with higher cardiovascular risk and trying to teach them the importance of lifestyle changes, physical exercise, and healthy eating habits. I carry out monthly groups with these patients and perform anthropometric and bioimpedance assessments. I teach them how obesity can have serious consequences over the years. I also try to make health professionals and municipal management aware of the importance of fighting obesity and metabolic syndrome, and consequently preventing more deaths from cardiovascular diseases. The population needs to be aware of the importance of obesity as a disease. Only then will they seek adequate treatment.

My father, without a doubt, was the most caring, humane and dedicated doctor I’ve ever met. Today I feel my work is a mission, and even with all the difficulties, I try to do my best to help every patient I can.

Photo: Adriane with her father in 2015. Courtesy of the author.

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