IRS: Tax Cut for Weight Loss?
Weight loss now is grouped with medical expenses such as cosmetic surgery, tattoos and health clubs -- none of them deductible. But the IRS says it may allow the weight-loss deductions if the American Obesity Association can show obesity is a disease or that an obese person's weight loss can prevent onset of disease.
The AOA says it has responded to the IRS in a 58-page letter documenting obesity as a major cause of disease and disability. "The medical and scientific evidence that obesity is a major disease and that losing weight prevents a host of other medical conditions is overwhelming," says Morgan Downey, AOA Executive Director.
Downey says the AOA is confident the IRS will change its rules to allow the deductions. Some 55 percent of all American adults are considered obese. Health costs for treating diseases caused by obesity, including diabetes and heart disease, are estimated at $100 billion annually.
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