Earlier this year, the American Medical Association deemed obesity a disease. AMA board member Patrice Harris, M.D., said in a statement that "recognizing obesity as a disease will help change the way the medical community tackles this complex issue that affects approximately one in three Americans."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the estimated annual medical cost of obesity in the U.S. was $147 billion in 2008 U.S. dollars; the medical costs for people who are obese were $1,429 higher than for those of normal weight.

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