Many diseases that may or may not ultimately be fatal, can become chronic and have a severe impact on the quality of life. About 100 million Americans—almost 1 out of every 2 adults have at least 1 of 6 reported chronic illnesses: cardiovascular disease (CVD), arthritis, diabetes, asthma, cancer, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). A  higher proportion of Americans will be afflicted by many diseases than will die from them.  For example, about 60% of men and 55% of women will be diagnosed with a cardiovascular disease (CVD) but only 1 in 4 will die from a CVD. The statistics for cancer are similar. 42% of men and 35% of women will get a diagnosis of cancer but 1 in 4 will die from it.

Christopher Murray and his Burden of Disease Collaborators assessed the major health problems in the U.S. in the period from 1990 to 2010. The diseases and injuries with the highest number of years of life lost due to premature mortality in 2010 were ischemic heart disease, lung cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and road injury. The study found that morbidity (illness) and chronic disability accounted for nearly half of the U.S. health burden. In 2010 Americans were living about three years longer than in 1990, but not longer without disabilities. Years lived with disability increased for Alzheimer disease, drug use disorders, chronic kidney disease, kidney cancer, and falls. The study suggests that, on average, Americans will be faced with a decade of living when they are not in good health. They will suffer from conditions in decreasing order of frequency: low back pain, major depressive disorder, other musculoskeletal disorders, neck pain, anxiety disorders, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, drug use disorders, diabetes, osteoarthritis, asthma, falls, Alzheimer disease, alcohol use disorders, and many other disease related disabilities that impair the quality of their lives.

This blog presents opinions and ideas and is intended to provide helpful general information.  I am not engaged in rendering advice or services to the individual reader. The ideas, procedures and suggestions in that are presented are not in any way a substitute for the advice and care of the reader’s own physician or other medical professional based on the reader’s own individual conditions, symptoms or concerns. If the reader needs personal medical, health, dietary, exercise or other assistance or advice the reader should consult a physician and/or other qualified health professionals. The author specifically disclaims all responsibility for any injury, damage or loss that the reader may incur as a direct or indirect consequence of following any directions or suggestions given in the book or participating in any programs described in this blog or in the book, The Building Blocks of Health––How to Optimize Wellness with a Lifestyle Checklist. References for most of the health related information in this blog can be found in the book, The Building Blocks of Health now available on Amazon at Copyright 2020 by J. Joseph Speidel.