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Should obesity be treated as a disease? Show more Show less
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Obesity affects more than 1/3 of America and is the leading cause of heart problems and heart-related deaths. In today's day and age, it is often normalized and praised. But should it be considered a disease?

Obesity is a mental illness Show more Show less

Most of the causes of obesity are related to mental health. Therefore, obesity is a mental illness.
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Mental illness can cause obesity

Depression is a major cause of weight gain as is anxiety and eating disorders.
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Poor mental health causes many problems with weight. Depression causes a lack of motivation to eat healthily or exercise in many cases. In addition, many antidepressants, antipsychotics, and mood stabilizers cause weight gain and hunger.

The Argument

Individuals that eat poorly in response to depression continue to overeat once they they are on medication due to an increase in appetite. Many people suffering from poverty end up being obese due to easy accessibility to unhealthy food, and stress from living in poverty. Mental illness usually has a reason or a trigger. To be diagnosed with a mental illness symptoms must have lasted several months. Obesity is certainly not something that can come and go in less than a month. Also, mental illness can be a reaction to a stressor or trauma. If the stressor is poverty and the reaction is overeating then that means obesity can be defined as a mental illness.

Counter arguments

Obesity is a result of mental illness, not the source. Depression causes weight gain as do many antidepressants. School is a source of anxiety, and anxiety is a mental illness. But school isn't a mental illness and neither is obesity.


[P1] Obesity is caused by mental distress and is therefore a mental illness

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P1] Obesity is the result of mental illness, not the source.



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This page was last edited on Monday, 2 Mar 2020 at 16:31 UTC