A slightly obese mayor in the Italian Alps is offering 50 euros to each of his townspeople if they can lose 9 or 7 pounds (depending on if you’re a man or a woman) in one month. That’s about $74. There’s an interesting article in Slate about how it’d benefit everyone if America paid its citizens to lose weight–thus making everyone healthier and sparing insurers from paying for as many obesity-related illnesses. Here’s an excerpt from the article:
Could the answer to this problem really be paying people to eat less
and exercise more? According to Dr. Eric Finkelstein, author of the
forthcoming book The Fattening of America, the answer is most definitely yes.
This fall, Finkelstein published a study involving 207 overweight or
obese people who wanted to lose weight. They were randomly broken into
three groups. One group was offered $14 for every 1 percent reduction
in body weight over the course of three months; another group was
offered just $7; and a control group nothing at all. On average,
members of the $14 group lost 5 pounds, members of the $7 group lost 3
pounds, and members of the control group lost just 2.
How much would it take to motivate you to lose weight? For me it’d be $150 a pound, I think. Plus a free belt so that I wouldn’t have to hold my stretch pants up with my hand.