It is much easier to prevent a disease then to cure it. Here are the top 10 diseases in the United States and ways of prevention in 2011:
Heart disease was the #1 disease affecting Americans in 2010. The World Health Organization’s (WHO) statistics showed 31.5% of women and 26.8% of men die of heart disease.
To prevent heart disease, become physically active, eat a heart healthy diet, and quit smoking.
Two-thirds of Americans are now either overweight or obese. Obesity has become an epidemic in the U.S. and leads to other diseases such as high blood pressure, hypertension, and diabetes. The best way to prevent obesity is through a well-balanced diet and physical activity.
The 2008 World Cancer Report predicted that deaths caused by cancers will nearly double by the year 2030. This means 27 million people will suffer from cancer by 2030 resulting in 17 million deaths every year. Experts believe the main culprit will be poor lifestyle choices. There are many forms of cancer, but limiting the intake of red meat and animal fat, exposure to the sun, alcohol intake, and knowing your family’s history can limit the risk of developing cancer.
Disease-causing germs such as bacteria, viruses, parasites or fungi spread diseases directly or indirectly from one person to the other – sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), HIV, etc. Infectious diseases are now the world’s biggest killer of children and young adults; they lead to 16.2% of worldwide deaths. Simple things like washing your hands and preparing foods properly could prevent the chances of spreading infectious diseases.
Around 2 million people die of tuberculosis (TB) every year. Researchers have shown almost one-third of the world’s population is infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacteria that cause tuberculosis. The bacteria are spread through coughing and sneezing. Be sure to cover your mouth and wash your hands.
Nearly 25 million people have been infected with HIV/AIDS from 1981 to the present.
According to the latest data from the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), an estimated 2.7 million people became newly infected with HIV in 2008, and 2 million people died of AIDS-related causes in 2008. Practicing safe sex and monogamy can prevent the chances of spreading or contracting HIV or AIDS. Your partner may look safe, but the only way to know the current status of yourself or your partner is by getting tested.
Lower respiratory tract infections
Diseases of the lungs, such as pneumonia, kill more than 4 million people each year. Lower respiratory tract infections also include tuberculosis and whooping cough. Washing hands, and following a healthy diet and exercise routine will help keep the immune system strong in order to fight off infections.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
COPD includes lung diseases that make breathing difficult. It is estimated that by 2020 it will be the third biggest killer in the world. Smoking is the most recognized cause for COPD but occupational exposure to dust, air pollution and certain inherited diseases have been known to cause the disease as well. Exercises built around strengthening your lungs, such as cardio, are a good way to prevent COPD.
An estimated 36,000 people die annually due to complications from influenza. Influenza, which is more commonly known as the flu, is a highly infectious disease that is caused by the influenza virus. Transmission of the disease is made through both airborne and physical contact. Hand-washing, covering coughs and sneezes, and avoiding people with the flu are a few ways to combat interception of the virus.
Clinical depression is one of the most common mental illnesses; affecting more than 19 million Americans each year. Developing healthy habits such as not overworking, taking breaks, meditation, and exercise can help prevent depression.
As simple as it seems, a healthy diet, physical activity, and a well-balanced lifestyle can help to further prevent the onset of many diseases. Take control in 2011 and begin to live your best life now.
Joint United Nations Program
World Cancer Report
World Health Organization (WHO)