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30 Jul, 2009 21:12

Obesity responsible for 10% of medical spending in USA

“We are doing things to help our community see that the best way to prevent heart disease, obesity and diabetes is through a vegetarian diet,” Nicole Matthews of PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, says.

The economic crisis has pushed many to turn to fast food as a cheap alternative to a more healthy diet.

A report published this week by the U.S. journal Health Affairs estimates that obesity-related diseases account for nearly 10% of all medical spending in America, now reaching $147 billion a year.

Obesity is on the rise, particularly in poor communities where people know that they should eat differently but simply cannot afford to.

Matthews agrees that “It is true that slim girls in bikini get a lot of attention and are good will ambassadors of vegetarianism, they are encouraging people to turn a new leaf and improve their health. But also take into consideration the billions of animals that are slaughtered every year for our power preference.”

Still, there is that financial aspect of the problem that makes people seek a cheaper way to keep their families fed.