Navigation Links
Americans Still Making Unhealthy Choices: CDC

By Dennis Thompson
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, May 21 (HealthDay News) -- The overall health of Americans isn't improving much, with about six in 10 people either overweight or obese and large numbers engaging in unhealthy behaviors like smoking, heavy drinking or not exercising, a new government report shows.

Released Tuesday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the report found Americans continuing to make many of the lifestyle choices that have led to soaring rates of heart disease, diabetes and other chronic illnesses, including the following:

  • About six of 10 adults drink, including an increase in those who reported episodic heavy drinking of five or more drinks in one day during the previous year.
  • Twenty percent of adults smoke, and less than one-half of smokers attempted to quit in the past year.
  • Only one in five adults met federal guidelines for both aerobic activity and muscle-strengthening exercise. One in three was completely inactive when it came to any leisure-time aerobic activity.

The one bright spot in the report came in the area of sleep behavior. About seven in 10 adults meet the federal objective for sufficient sleep.

The findings have been gleaned from nearly 77,000 random interviews conducted between 2008 and 2010.

The numbers reflect persistent trends, said report author Charlotte Schoenborn, a health statistician at the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics.

"Changes have not been enormous," Schoenborn said. "It's been a very, very slow process of changing awareness of personal choices for healthier ways of life. All of the health-related federal agencies, and a lot of nonfederal groups, are putting a lot of resources to make people aware of the effect they can have on their own health. This report is just designed to say where we are."

The findings did not surprise Rich Hamburg, deputy director of Trust for America's Health, a nonprofit public health organization.

"I think we're in a situation now where we're at a crossroads," Hamburg said. "We have two paths to go. We're hopeful that if we continue to invest in community-based prevention, if we promote healthy eating and active living, these rates will begin to decrease."

Public health organizations use this report to determine which groups of Americans are susceptible to unhealthy behaviors, study author Schoenborn said.

For example, while overall people are getting enough sleep, it turns out that doesn't hold true for people with marital problems, she said. About 38 percent of divorced, separated, or widowed adults have trouble getting enough sleep, compared with 27 percent of married folks.

While this is not the federal government's official report on obesity, its findings jibe with both public and private research into the epidemic, said Hamburg at Trust for America's Health.

At this point, only seven states have overweight and obesity rates that are under 60 percent, he said.

"We've seen for nearly three decades a rise in adult rates of overweight and obesity," Hamburg said. "We're hoping we are reaching a plateau, but we've hoped for that in the past."

Young adults provide the most hope for the future, it appears. For example, those aged 18 to 24 were the only age group to show a decline in smoking, from 23.5 percent to about 21 percent.

"Smoking has remained very stubborn at one in five adults. It's just a terrible addiction," Schoenborn said. "The one small little glimmer of hope I saw was in the 18- to 24-year-olds, where we saw some improvement. You hear so much about overweight and obesity and chronic diseases, and how much of our health lies in our hands, but nothing seems to be changing much."

For his part, Hamburg said that despite the lack of progress, it is vital to continue pressing the case that Americans have the power to improve their health through their personal choices. Without lifestyle changes, chronic disease will flourish and health care spending will skyrocket.

"If we can lower obesity trends by a small amount, say 5 percent in each state, we could save millions of American from health problem and save billions of dollars in health spending," he said.

More information

To check out U.S. health goals for 2020, visit

SOURCES: Charlotte Schoenborn, M.P.H., U.S. National Center for Health Statistics; Rich Hamburg, deputy director, Trust for America's Health; May 21, 2013, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report, Health Behaviors of Adults: United States, 2008-2010

Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Young Americans Need to Cut Calorie Intake: Study
2. Americans Support Medicare Reform, But Not on Their Dime: Poll
3. One-third of adult Americans with arthritis battle anxiety or depression
4. Systemic sclerosis complications more severe in African Americans than Caucasians
5. 53 million Americans might have diabetes by 2025, according to a new study in Population Health Management
6. Fewer Young Americans Smoking, Survey Finds
7. Genetic marker may predict smoking quantity in African Americans
8. Half of Americans with individual health plans could gain better coverage under the ACA
9. 1 in 5 Americans Has Untreated Cavities: CDC
10. WSU study finds overwhelming evidence of hidden heart disease in hypertensive African-Americans
11. More Than 46 Million Americans Uninsured in 2011: Report
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Americans Still Making Unhealthy Choices: CDC
(Date:6/25/2016)... D.C. (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... discuss health policy issues and applications at AcademyHealth’s Annual Research Meeting June 26-28, ... their work on several important health care topics including advance care planning, healthcare ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, ... and his M.D from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained ... Angeles to complete his fellowship in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Those who have ... these feelings, many turn to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or alcohol abuse, as ... Michigan, has released tools for healthy coping following a traumatic event. , Trauma sufferers ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... Dr. Amanda Cheng, an orthodontist ... has extensive experience with all areas of orthodontics, including robotic Suresmile technology, ... , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct to orthodontic treatment. It can be used ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... The Haute ... Dr. Barry M. Weintraub as a prominent plastic surgeon and the network’s newest ... world, and the most handsome men, look naturally attractive. Plastic surgery should be ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/26/2016)... 2016 Story Highlights: ... within the health care industry is causing providers to ... , Deloitte offers a suite of solutions for health ... efficient cost optimization: labor resource analysis, revenue cycle optimization ... better outcomes and better economics ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... CAMBRIDGE, Mass. , June 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... the Spaulding Rehabilitation Network,s Dean Center for ... of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, MIT Hacking Medicine, ... Center for Innovation, today announced the five finalists ... Hackathon for Lyme disease.  More than 100 scientists, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... -- Dehaier Medical Systems Ltd. (NASDAQ: DHRM ... sells medical devices and wearable sleep respiratory products in ... agreement with Hongyuan Supply Chain Management Co., Ltd. (hereinafter ... 2016, to develop Dehaier,s new Internet medical technology business. ... leverage Hongyuan Supply Chain,s sales platform to reach Dehaier,s ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: