The US Government Is Subsidizing America's Obesity Problem

twinkieIn 2011 $1.28 billion in taxpayer subsidies went to junk food ingredients.

Photo: USPIRG

The U.S. government is contributing to the nation’s expanding obesity problem by providing billions of dollars in agricultural subsidies to help produce junk food, according to a new report from the the U.S. Public Interest Research Group. The report – Apples to Twinkies 2012 – reveals that out of the more than $277 billion American taxpayers spent on agricultural subsidies between 1995 and 2011, $18.2 billion went to four common food additives – corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, corn starch and hydrogenated vegetable oils – that are common in junk food.

Apples, one of the few fresh fruits or vegetables that have a significant federal subsidy, received only $637 million in subsidies since 1995.

More than one-third of U.S. adults (35.7 per cent) are obese while nearly one in five U.S. children aged 6 to 11 and one in six (18 per cent) Americans aged 12 to 19 were obese  in 2008. 

SEE ALSO: Here’s Where You’ll Find The Fattest People In The World >

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