Tampa, Fla. – The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC), and its more than 50,000 members, are calling on ABC Television Group and parent company Disney to remove fat-shaming content from the “Dr. Ken” show, set to debut this October.

“After viewing the trailer for the show, it’s apparent that ABC is treating the disease of obesity as a joke, which it most certainly is not. More than 93 million Americans are impacted by obesity. This disease is no laughing matter,” said Joe Nadglowski, OAC President and CEO.

The fat-shaming content featured in “Dr. Ken” not only perpetuates weight bias, but it also furthers the misconception that healthcare providers do not want to help patients with obesity. This is extremely damaging to individuals wanting to address their weight and health in a clinical setting.

“My question to ABC and Disney would be, ‘Why do you feel the need to make fun of people with obesity?’ Obesity has been linked to diabetes, hypertension, sleep apnea and many other serious conditions. To have obesity as the catalyst for humor is simply ridiculous,” said Ted Kyle, RPh, MBA, OAC Chairman.

Along with these serious medical conditions obesity carries the burden of being the last acceptable form of discrimination in today’s society. Weight bias and fat-shaming can have a very harmful impact on individuals affected by obesity. Psychological effects include depression, anxiety and poor body image. From a social and physical aspect, weight bias can lead to social rejection by peers, unhealthy weight control practices and more.

Anchored by the OAC’s “Ban the F Word: Fat Shaming” movement, the OAC has seen recent victories such as Facebook’s removal of fat-shaming-based pages. “It’s our hope that ABC and Disney make the right decision here and remove this hateful content from the show,” said Nadglowski.

The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC), a more than 50,000 member-strong National nonprofit organization, is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals affected by the disease of obesity through education, advocacy and support.