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CHICAGO -- The American Medical Association says yearly instruction aimed at preventing obesity should be required for public schoolchildren and teens.

Support for such education is among new obesity-fighting policies that the nation s largest doctors group adopted at its annual meeting Wednesday.

The AMA says it will support legislation that would require yearly classes in causes, consequences and prevention of obesity for grades 1 through 12.

Doctors will be encouraged to volunteer their time to help the effort.

Another new policy says the AMA supports the idea of taxing sugar-sweetened sodas as one way to help pay for obesity-fighting programs. But the group stopped short of a full-fledged endorsement. Some doctors think soda taxes would disproportionately hurt the poor and disadvantaged.

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