Americans are less healthy and die sooner than people in other developed nations, according to a study conducted by the National Research Council. The study, titled US Health in International Perspective: Shorter Lives, Poorer Health, compared health outcomes and longevity of 17 affluent nations. Americans came in dead last.
Although the study failed to name any single cause of Americans’ poor health, there are several areas of concern that should be addressed.
According to Joseph Mercola, M.D. at www.mercola.com, obesity is the number one health problem in America. Mercola questions why it is so difficult for Americans to keep their weight under control and points a finger at the preponderance of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) in processed foods. He states that infant formula contains the sugar equivalent of one can of Coca-Cola.
Another area of concern is lack of physical activity. According to www.mercola.com, one third of American adults are completely sedentary, meaning they never engage in any physical activity lasting more than 10 minutes a week.
A scary statistic from the Environmental Working Group (EWG) concerns newborns: according to a study done by EWG, cord blood samples from newborns contained an average of 287 toxins. Of the 287 toxins, 180 are known carcinogens, and 217 of them can affect the brain and nervous system. The fact that babies are being born loaded with toxins is a clear indication that our exposure to environmental toxins has reached dangerous levels.
Americans consume way too much processed food, most of which contains genetically modified food products. These products have been shown to increase levels of inflammation in the body, which raises the risk of developing chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer. According to www.mercola.com, “four of the six leading causes of death in the United States are linked to unhealthy diets.”
Results of the study done by the National Research Council can be found at www.nationalacademies.org.