Five Things to Seek at ECO 2024

Gondola in VeniceWe’re packing our bags for Venice, where the European Congress on Obesity (ECO 2024) will start in just a few days. A lot will be coming at us in a short space of time, so taking time to set some priorities is essential. Thus, we have a short list of things that we’ll be seeking in the short span of four days in Italy.

Of course, a list like this is highly subjective and, no doubt, we’re missing something. So speak up and let us know about the hidden gems in this program.

1. Evolving Guidelines

We are barely skimming the surface of the potential that new obesity medicines have brought for improving the health of people living with obesity. Supplies are short and prices, though dropping, are still high.

With all that said, the clinical approach to obesity is poised for dramatic change and we are especially looking forward to two sessions at ECO 2024 that will help us with a view of the future. On Monday at 5 pm, Paolo Sbraccia will chair a session on guidelines for obesity care. Then on Tuesday, an entire session will offer a review of work by the Lancet Commission on Clinical Obesity.

We are eager for the articulation of a mature clinical framework for obesity care that gets beyond historical preoccupations with BMI, weight loss, and appearance.


As we come to understand that the symptoms of obesity are more than just size-related, symptoms of liver dysfunction are coming into view as a key feature of obesity. NASH has become MASH and NAFLD has become MAFLD and MASLD. Beyond the fun with acronyms, the clinical outlook for these complications of obesity is changing and we are looking forward to a Sunday session at 12:30 to give us a glimpse of the future.

3. Obesity in Youth

It seems like only yesterday that young persons with obesity were left behind in the quest for better obesity care. Things have changed considerably. In an abstract session on Sunday afternoon and a symposium on Tuesday afternoon we expect to hear perspectives that are very different from what we heard at our first ECO in Portugal and full of hope for better health in youth with obesity.

4. Healthy Muscles

Lots of talk swirls about people losing muscle mass when they lose fat. But the more important conversation to have is about muscular health and body composition. Toward that end, we’re looking for important insights from a new study of muscle health in persons with obesity which Jennifer Linge and colleagues are bringing to ECO 2024. They tell us that poor muscle health in people with obesity may be a key factor in premature deaths.

5. The Talk

As much as we will be soaking up all the information we can from scientific sessions, we will be learning much from colleagues we see only occasionally. Gaining perspective from conversations in the very pleasant environment of Venice will certainly be a highlight.

Click here for the program and download the mobile app (ECO24) for all the details, including the abstracts – even if you won’t be in Venice with us. Or you can download the meeting abstracts here.

Gondola in Venice, painting by Claude Monet / WikiArt

Subscribe by email to follow the accumulating evidence and observations that shape our view of health, obesity, and policy.


May 9, 2024

2 Responses to “Five Things to Seek at ECO 2024”

  1. May 09, 2024 at 7:27 am, Christine Rosenlboom said:

    Safe travels and look forward to seeing your insights.

  2. May 09, 2024 at 10:46 am, Mary-Jo said:

    Looking forward to updates on all these important topics. On another note, try to get to one of the Cipriani restaurants. Order a vanilla meringue cake ( good for sharing)! Beware, the famous cafe in St. Mark’s Square charges 12.50 E for a coffee if you say yes to wanting to hear the singers! lol!