Weight Bias & Stigma > Videos Exposing Weight Bias
To increase public awareness about weight bias, the Rudd Center created three videos demonstrating myths and facts about weight prejudice, and the nature and extent of weight bias at home and in school, and in health care. Two of the videos are hosted by former supermodel and activist Emme and feature Rudd Center experts including Rebecca Puhl, PhD, Deputy Director. Each video uses both expert commentary and dramatic representation, and offers concrete strategies to help combat this significant societal problem.
Research evidence suggests that using healthcare video as an educational intervention may be effective in helping to reduce stigmatizing attitudes among students and future healthcare professionals. Specifically, studies published in Obesity Facts and Family Medicine demonstrates the effectiveness of this video in reducing negative attitudes and weight bias among trainees in health-related disciplines. Specifically, researchers found that trainees who viewed the video and engaged in a discussion increased their beliefs that obesity is caused by multiple factors (and not simply under personal control), and decreased negative stereotypes about patients with obesity.
HBO/Rudd Center Film Is Effective Reducing Weight Bias
In a new study, researchers found that viewing an HBO film on weight stigma that was produced under the guidance of UConn Rudd Center Deputy Director Rebecca Puhl was effective in reducing weight bias. The brief film, “Stigma: The Human Cost of Obesity,” was a “bonus short” film produced as part of HBO’s 2012 documentary series called “Weight of the Nation.”
The bonus film features Dr. Puhl, who also provided research expertise and guidance to the filmmakers during its making. In the 2016 study, published in the journal Stigma and Health, researchers conducted a randomized experiment to examine the effects of viewing this film on stigma-related outcomes. The results showed that the film was effective in reducing weight stigma toward people with obesity. “Given the national reach of this film, it is exciting to see research that demonstrates its effectiveness as a stigma-reduction intervention,” Dr. Puhl said.