Obesity Guide

Welcome to this guide that is produced by Ability Maine. I have structured this guide to reflect many of the aspects of obesity, in terms of relevant issues, health and personal resources, and by adding a few commercial vendors of products that obese consumers purchase. Hope you find the links helpful in your search for information.
-Russell Anderson

National Organizations

National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA)
NAAFA is a non-profit human rights organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for fat people. NAAFA has been working since 1969 to eliminate discrimination based on body size and provide fat people with the tools for self-empowerment through public education, advocacy, and member support.

Discussions on Fat Acceptance
As you try to approach weight issues in a new way, you may find yourself fielding questions about how you can be trying to just accept your body size rather than lose weight.

ANRED (Anorexia Nervosa and Related Eating Disorders)
A nonprofit organization that provides information about anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, compulsive exercising, and other less well-known food and weight disorders.

The National Organization for Lesbians Of Size
A support, social and networking group for women who identify themselves as lesbians, and who are fat, or fat positive.


Many of the links in this guide will have information regarding exercise. The following link details the complexity of a fitness program. This is a recommendation to a plan and routine maintenance efforts in exercising. Always consult your doctor before attempting any program for exercising.

Hopkins Technology
Fitness Fundamentals - Guidelines for Personal Exercise Programs

Recent Lawsuits Against Fat Discrimination in The U.S.

National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA)
Founded in 1969, the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance is a non-profit human rights organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for fat people. NAAFA works to eliminate discrimination based on body size and provide fat people with the tools for self-empowerment through public education, advocacy, and member support.

Obesity Perspectives and Statistics in the U.S.

National Library of Medicine
National statistics and a wealth of additional information on obesity.

National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion
More statistics and useful information of obesity.

Health Overview by Dr. Mills
Dr. Dora A. Mills is Maine's Chief Medical Director who heads the Bureau of Health.

Weight Loss & Control

Weight-control Information Network (WIN)
The Weight-control Information Network (WIN) is a national information service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Shape Up America!
This website is designed to provide you with the latest information about safe weight management, healthy eating, increased activity and physical fitness.

A new federal resource, providing easy access to all online federal government information on nutrition.

Links On Weight Loss & More
A long list of links on weight loss and more.


Healthnet: Connecticut Consumer Health Information Network
Recommended web sites on general nutrition, diet and weight management, and fitness.


This website presents a balanced approach of dieting and maintaining healthy nutrition, many other useful features and links, and a calculator to determine weight loss according to your weight and height.

Childhood Obesity

KidSource Online
Many topics on cause and effect, diet and exercise, and much more.

Do your children spend more time inside the house watching television or playing computer games than they spend playing outside?

Teasing & Bullying of Overweight Children

Issues children have when dealing with their weight and peer acceptance.

Health Risks Connected With Obesity

Overall Predominant Risks

The following websites provide an array of information on obesity, health, nutrition, exercise, etc.; however, these specific links also address the primary health risks in being overweight or morbidly obese.

The Surgeon General's Call to Action

The American Society of Bariatric Physicians

Florida State University College of Medicine


Medical College of Wisconsin

Arthritis & Osteoarthritis

The Johns Hopkins Arthritis Website
Osteoarthritis is the most common joint disorder with symptoms in the hands, knees, hips, back, and neck. It is unclear exactly how excess weight influences OA. Clearly, being overweight increases the load placed on the joints such as the knee, which increases stress and could possibly hasten the breakdown of cartilage.

Heart Disease

American Heart Association

Heart Attack & Stroke Warning Signs

Cardiac arrest strikes immediately and without warning. If it occurs, call 9-1-1 and begin CPR immediately. Here are the signs of cardiac arrest:

  • Sudden loss of responsiveness. No response to gentle shaking
  • No normal breathing. The victim does not take a normal breath when you check for several seconds.
  • No signs of circulation. No movement or coughing

Programs of the Maine Cardiovascular Health Council
A joint project of the Maine Cardiovascular Health Council and Medical Care Development, Inc. This is statewide effort in cardiovascular health promotion and disease prevention at the local level.

HeartCenter Online
An overview of the effects of obesity on the body. A comprehensive site for heart and health facts.

The American Society of Bariatric Physicians
"The study found that men, 45 to 54 years of age who are not obese, faced a 35 percent chance of developing coronary heart disease during their lifetimes; risks increased to 38 percent for those who were mildly obese, 42 percent for those who were moderately obese, and 46 percent for those who were severely obese. Risks increased from 25 percent for the women who are not obese, to 29 percent, 32 percent, and 37 percent, depending the level of obesity."

Sleep Apnea

The American Sleep Apnea Association
The Greek word "apnea" literally means "without breath." There are three types of sleep apnea: obstructive, central, and mixed; of the three, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the most common. Despite the difference in the root cause of each type, in all three, people with untreated sleep apnea stop breathing repeatedly during their sleep, sometimes hundreds of times during the night and often for a minute or longer.

Obesity & Depression


Weight is an American obsession. Ironically, the more Americans struggle to be thin, the more overweight we are. Approximately one-third of the American population is obese, meaning that they weigh more than 20 percent above the ideal weight for their height. The number of overweight Americans has risen steadily during the past decade, including the number of seriously obese adults and overweight children.

Bariatric (Weight Loss) Surgery

Bariatric Resources in Maine
A list of Maine surgeons, insurers, and other useful information about bariatric surgery.

Bariatric Surgery Support
A nationwide support group.

Women's Links

Size Positive Links
Extensive listing of links on a wide array of positive obesity topics and articles for women.

Body Burden
Living in the shadow of Barbie… an American myth?

Clothing for Large People

Uniquely Me: Plus Sizes for Women

King Size Direct: Clothes for Big Men

Product Links

List of Suppliers of Chairs, Beds, and Other Topics
Informative links!

Links to various products.
"We are here to provide you with information and resources designed to make your life healthier, more comfortable, and enjoyable."

Automobile Comfort
This list is meant to give you a general idea of which cars provide more interior room. (2000 – 2003)

2005 – 2007 Models http://www.sizewise.com/docs/autos2005.html

Scales Up To 1000 Pounds
Personal electronic weighing scales at $200 or more in price.

*** Disclaimer ***

Ability Maine does not imply endorsement of these sites, their content or products. Use of this information is intended only for educational purposes, as reference points to prompt your search for accurate information pertaining to your personal issues around obesity. Professional advice or consultation should be sought from a qualified and licensed practitioner when inquiring about medical resources.


©2008 Resources for Organizing and Social Change