Fatima Cody Stanford, MD

Dr. Stanford is an Associate Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics who practices and teaches at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH)/ Harvard Medical School (HMS) as one of the first fellowship-trained obesity medicine physicians worldwide. She is among the most highly cited obesity medicine physician-scientists, with over 200 peer-reviewed publications. Stanford has conducted 1200 media interviews, including with the New York Times, USA Today, Time, U.S. News & World Report, Glamour, and NPR. In 2023, Stanford appeared on 60 Minutes with Lesley Stahl, stating obesity is a chronic disease and that there is physician bias against those with excess weight. In an interview with Deborah Roberts on addressing weight stigma, Dr. Stanford advocates eliminating bias towards those with higher weights. Oprah Winfrey interviewed Dr. Stanford as an obesity expert for her “The Life You Want Class: The State of the Weight” on Oprah Daily. In this interview, she teaches about the science of obesity as a chronic disease. In an interview with Sanjay Gupta for his CNN Chasing Life podcast, she coined the term “street corner medicine” to refer to the assumption that people judge people based on their size– they assume that heavier people are unhealthy and leaner people are healthy without investigating whether this is factual by evaluating metabolic health parameters such as blood pressure, cholesterol, liver function tests, blood sugar, etc.

Dr. Stanford received her BS and MPH from Emory University as an MLK Scholar, her MD from the Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine as a Stoney Scholar, her MPA from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government as a Zuckerman Fellow in the Harvard Center for Public Leadership and her executive MBA as a merit-based scholarship recipient from the Quantic School of Business and Technology. She completed her Obesity Medicine & Nutrition Fellowship at MGH/HMS after completing her internal medicine and pediatrics residency at the University of South Carolina. She has served as a health communications fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and as a behavioral sciences intern at the American Cancer Society. Upon completing her MPH, she received the Gold Congressional Award, the highest honor Congress bestows upon America’s youth.

Dr. Stanford has completed a medicine and media internship at the Discovery Channel. An American Medical Association (AMA) Foundation Leadership Award recipient in 2005 and an AMA Paul Ambrose Award for national leadership among resident physicians in 2009, she was selected for the AMA Inspirational Physician Award in 2015. The American College of Physicians (ACP) selected her as the 2013 Joseph E. Johnson Leadership Award recipient, and the Massachusetts ACP selected her for the Young Leadership Award in 2015. She is the 2017 recipient of the HMS Amos Diversity Award and the Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) Award for Women’s Health. In 2019, she was selected as the Suffolk District Community Clinician of the Year for the Reducing Health Disparities Award for MMS. She was chosen for The Obesity Society Clinician of the Year in 2020. In 2021, she was awarded the MMS Grant Rodkey Award for her dedication to medical students and the AMA Dr. Edmond and Rima Cabbabe Dedication to the Profession Award, which recognizes a physician who demonstrates active and productive improvement to the profession of medicine through community service, advocacy, leadership, teaching, or philanthropy. She is the 2021 Recipient of the Emory Rollins School of Public Health Distinguished Alumni Award. In 2022, the National Academy of Medicine selected her as a Scholar in Diagnostic Excellence. She was named to the 2025 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee by the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Agriculture (USDA).

Obesity Medicine Physician Scientist, Mass General Hospital;

Associate Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School


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