Attention to what you eat is crucial, chronic diseases —including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and cancer— account for some of the most common health problems in the United States. Yet many of these chronic diseases are preventable, as they’re linked to poor diet and lifestyle choices including tobacco use, excessive alcohol consumption, and inadequate physical activity.
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) reports some interesting statistics about Americans and the problems we face:
- Chronic diseases are the leading causes of death and disability.
- 70% of annual deaths are due to chronic diseases.
- These preventable conditions not only compromise quality of life, they add to rising health care costs—75% of our health care dollars are devoted to treat these diseases.
- Among adults ages 20 to 74, diabetes remains the leading cause of kidney failure, blindness, and non-traumatic lower-extremity amputations.
The great news is that you have the power to help prevent chronic diseases, making positive diet and lifestyle changes can help reduce risk. Eating healthy foods, getting enough exercise, and refraining from tobacco and excessive alcohol use confer numerous health benefits—including possibly preventing the onset of chronic diseases.
What should I eat?
It’s recommend to eat mostly vegetables, fruit, and whole grains, healthy fats, and healthy proteins. Drink more water instead of sugary beverages, and also be conscious of common dietary concerns such as salt and sodium, vitamins, and alcohol. It’s also important to stay active and maintain a healthy weight.
The contents of this page are for educational purposes and are not intended to offer personal medical advice. Talk to your local physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding diet, medical conditions, and nutrition. They know best, so what they say shouldn’t be disregarded because of something you have read on this website.