Thursday, 16 August 2007

Italian town to pay residents to lose weight

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According to the NCI, in 2001, experts concluded that cancers of the colon, breast (postmenopausal), endometrium, kidney and esophagus are associated with obesity. Additional studies have reported links between obesity and cancers of the gallbladder, ovaries and pancreas. Obesity can also contribute to other diseases including heart disease and diabetes.

In the Italian town of Varallo, Mayor Gianluca Buonanno is taking matters into his own hands. Men in town will receive 50 euros ($70) for losing 9 lbs in a month. Women will get the same amount for losing 7 pounds in a month. If they can keep the weight off for five months, they will get an extra 200 euros ($280).

About 35 percent of Italians are overweight or obese and the rate is rising as the country's traditional diet is slowly changing to include more and more processed foods.

I think Mayor Buananno has a great idea here. Since lifestyle choices can be so critical in the development of some illnesses, including some cancers, I'm all for paying people to make the right ones.

What do you think?

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