Being fat can take a toll on your health and your bank account. A new estimate puts an exact figure for the entire country: a whopping $147 billion per year devoted to obesity-related health care.
In 1998, the proportion of medical costs related to obesity were about 6.5 percent. That figure grew to 9.1 percent in 2006. The percentage takes into account payments made by Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance companies and perscription drug spending.
Obese people spent 45 percent more in medical care than their normal weight counterparts in 2006. The individual impact? $1,429 more per year.
The study, Annual Medical Spending Attributable to Obesity: Payer- and Service-Specific Estimates, was released today and is sparking a new urgency in the fight against fat.