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Obesity Prevention Better Funded Than Anti-Tobacco Programs

The increased attention the fight against obesity has been enjoying over the last year comes at its own price.

Funding from both private firms and the federal government has been shifted from anti-tobacco programs to give more financial support to fighting obesity.

In March, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius awarded $372 million to prevention programs, 62 percent of which was allotted to obesity programs, while tobacco prevention received only 38 percent.

The New York Times reports that Stanton Glantz, director of the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, sees the funding allocation as disproportionate:

Given that tobacco kills four times as many people as obesity does, why is the government putting more money into obesity?

However, smoking rates have plummeted in recent years, while the rate of obese Americans has doubled since 1985 and is attributed to spike in health care costs.

What do you think? Should funding resources favor healthy eating and exercise or smoking prevention and cessation?

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