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Table 1 Examples of interventions to prevent weight bias, organized using the Nuffield Council on Bioethics’ intervention ladder as a framework [52]

From: Weight bias: a call to action

Government action Examples in the field of weight bias (Research locations)
Restrict choice. • Develop legislation to prohibit weight discrimination [48] (U.S.A., Canada, Australia, Iceland)
• Implement anti-discrimination laws against bullying in schools and weight discrimination in the employment and healthcare sectors [62] (U.S.A.)
• Mandatory post-secondary curricula and appropriate training on weight-related issues for pre-service student teachers, health professionals and public health practitioners [58, 62, 63] (Canada, U.S.A., Iceland, Australia)
• Formal training for coaches to prevent eating disorders in sports [62] (U.S.A.)
• Mandatory implementation of evidence-based body appreciation, media literacy and eating disorder prevention programs in schools [62, 64] (U.S.A.)
• Ban digital modification of images that glamorize thinness in women and muscularity in men in the media [65] (Australia)
Guide choice through disincentives. • Implement penalties for evidence of weight discrimination in employment, healthcare and education sectors (e.g., charging schemes in the employment and healthcare sectors, exclusion from extra-curricular activities for youth in schools)
Guide choice through incentives. • Offer awards, fiscal or other incentives for the promotion of wellbeing and body inclusivity in the education, healthcare and employment sectors (e.g., a school board could offer an award or recognition for schools that implement body inclusivity in their teaching and learning practices)
Guide choice through changing the default policy. • Devise media and journalism guidelines for prohibiting gender-based and weight-based stereotypes in the media [66] (U.S.A.) (e.g., stop portraying women of size eating ice cream to cope with mental health issues)
• Depict positive stereotypes of people living with obesity in the media [67] (U.S.A.)
Enable choice. • Modify the built environment to accommodate individuals of all weights [68] (U.S.A.) (e.g., chairs in waiting rooms, staircases, airplane seats, hospital beds, clothing uniforms and exercise equipment)
• Offer an evidence-based school program geared towards positive body image, acceptance of body diversity and prevention of weight-related issues [64] (U.S.A.)
Provide information. • Create flyers and posters that promote positive body image and body diversity and distribute them in schools
• Disseminate population health campaigns to address weight bias [69] (Australia)
Do nothing or simply monitor the situation • Monitor the prevalence of weight bias in different sectors (i.e., education, healthcare, employment)
• Do nothing
  1. Note: Strategies for evaluation of the effectiveness and cost of these initiatives must also be incorporated