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United States losing ground to other countries in health outcomes
Date:7/10/2013

than the average of its peer countries. Out of its 34 peer countries, the US ranked 27th in disease burden risk from dietary factors, 27th on high body mass index (BMI), and 29th on blood sugar. It did better than its peers in only four areas: occupational risks, low bone mineral density, unimproved sanitation, and iron deficiency.

While the science around dietary risks continues to improve, there is stronger evidence about the connection between dietary risks and health than there is for obesity, alcohol, or drug use.

The top 10 risk factors for health loss in 2010 and the number of deaths attributable to each were:

Dietary risks 678,282
Smoking 465,651
High blood pressure 442,656
High body mass index 363,991
Physical inactivity 234,022
High blood sugar 213,669
High total cholesterol 158,431
Ambient air pollution 103,027
Alcohol use 88,587
Drug use 25,430

If the US can make progress with dietary risk factors, physical activity, and obesity, it will see massive reductions in death and disability, said Dr. Ali Mokdad, head of the US County Health Performance team for IHME and former director of the Behavior Risk Factors and Surveillance Survey at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Unhealthy diets and a lack of physical activity in the US cause more health loss than smoking, alcohol, or drug use.


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Contact: Rhonda Stewart
stewartr@uw.edu
206-897-2863
Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation
Source:Eurekalert

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