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Feast on tax deductions for special foods

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in Small Business Tax,Small Business Tax Deduction Strategies

Q. My husband is on a special diet because of a medical condition. Can we deduct his food as a medical expense? S.V., Sherman Oaks, Calif.

A. It depends. Generally, medical expenses are deductible if you incur the cost for the prevention or alleviation of a physical or mental defect or illness. But medical expenses that are beneficial to your general health can't be deducted.

Thus, special foods and beverages may qualify for a deduction only if the items have been prescribed by a physician for the alleviation or treatment of a specific illness.

Tip: Similarly, you may deduct costs associated with a weight loss program, but only for treatment of a specific disease diagnosed by a physician. 


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