“COVID-19 outcome disparities are rapidly becoming apparent for people with obesity and multiple black, Asian, and minority ethnic (BAME) groups. Researchers have reported differences in COVID-19 hospitalization and mortality rates by race/ethnicity in the United Kingdom (UK) [1, 2] and United States (US) [3, 4]. Numerous minority ethnic groups in these countries live with a greater burden of obesity and other chronic diseases. This is particularly significant as obesity has emerged as a risk factor for severe COVID-19, the disease caused by novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 [3, 5]. We synthesize a range of potential biological, socioeconomic, behavioral, and sociological contributors to the disparate outcomes for people with obesity and minority ethnic groups in COVID-19.
Initial retrospective cohort analyses have demonstrated higher rates of hospitalization and intensive care, including invasive mechanical ventilation, for patients with obesity [5, 6]. Though these observational results do not assess mortality outcomes and adjust for few comorbidities, they signal potential biologic vulnerability for a large proportion of people worldwide living with obesity. Obesity rates are significantly higher among Hispanic and African Americans, as well as black, Bangladeshi, and Pakistani groups in the UK, than their white counterparts [1, 7]. The overlap of COVID-19 risk signals between obesity and ethnicity therefore is of consequence.”
Kara Fitzgerald, ND, received her doctor of naturopathic medicine degree from the National University of Natural Medicine in Portland, Oregon. She completed the first Counsel on Naturopathic Medicine-accredited post-doctorate position in nutritional biochemistry and laboratory science at Metametrix Clinical Laboratory under the direction of Richard Lord, PhD. Her residency was completed at Progressive Medical Center, a large, integrative medical practice in Atlanta, Georgia.
Dr. Fitzgerald is the lead author and editor of Case Studies in Integrative and Functional Medicine and is a contributing author to Laboratory Evaluations for Integrative and Functional Medicine and the Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM)’s Textbook for Functional Medicine. With the Helfgott Research Institute, Dr. Fitzgerald is actively engaged in clinical research on the DNA methylome using a diet and lifestyle intervention developed in her practice. The first publication from the study focuses on reversal of biological aging and was published 04-12-2021 in the journal Aging. She has published a consumer book titled Younger You as well as a companion cookbook, Better Broths and Healing Tonics and has an application-based Younger You Program, based on the study.
Dr. Fitzgerald is on the faculty at IFM, is an IFM Certified Practitioner and lectures globally on functional medicine. She runs a Functional Nutrition Residency program, and maintains a podcast series, New Frontiers in Functional Medicine and an active blog on her website, www.drkarafitzgerald.com. Her clinical practice is in Sandy Hook, Connecticut.
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.