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Have you noticed that women’s sizes in catalogs now go up to 6X? Twenty years ago, you were lucky to find clothing in size 1X. January is when we look in the mirror and resolve to be smaller by the end of the year. It’s when all the weight-loss resolutions kick in.
Let’s see what we can do about saving money and minimizing the cost of your own weight-loss resolution.
Tax deductions for medical expenses
Can I deduct the cost of the food in my weight-loss program?
In a word? No. The IRS says you must eat anyway. Regular food, or even special food (no lactose, gluten-free, etc.), is still food. The same thing applies to special water and any other designer delights folks dream up. However, there may be certain foods or beverages that are prescribed specifically to treat a medical condition and that are not just for general nutrition. Those costs would be deductible.
What about the cost of a weight-loss program?
When a doctor prescribes weight loss for a medical condition (obesity, hypertension, diabetes, etc.), the answer is yes! In 2002, the IRS published a Revenue Ruling that specifically addressed this issue.
What else can I deduct in relation to my weight loss?
As long as the costs are for treating or curing your medical condition, you can use any of the following as medical expenses:
These are the things you cannot deduct:
If your fitness regimen doesn’t qualify for a tax deduction, there are low-tech, simple things you can do to lose weight that cost absolutely nothing, including:
I don’t know about anyone else, but I’ve gotten so efficient that I barely burn any calories anymore, sitting at my computer all day. It’s time for me to start moving! How about you?
Money Management Tips: Storing Your Paperwork
Last-Minute Ideas for Saving Money on Your Taxes
Documenting Your Donations for Tax Deductions
Tax Deduction for Claiming Elderly Relatives and Dependents
Tax Tips: Tax Implications of a New Baby
Paying Taxes on Self-Employed or Side Income
Eva Rosenberg, EA is the publisher of TaxMama.com , where your tax questions are answered. Eva is the author of several books and ebooks, including the new edition of Small Business Taxes Made Easy. Eva teaches a tax pro course at IRSExams.com and tax courses you might enjoy at http://www.cpelink.com/teamtaxmama.
Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.