Sick! Epidemic of Chronic Diseases
1 in 2 American adults have a chronic disease, and 7 in 10 deaths can be directly linked to chronic illnesses. 80% of Americans 65 and older suffer from a chronic disease. Chronic diseases are illnesses that can be controlled but not cure and is long lasting. A few examples of chronic disease are cystic fibrosis, Alzheimer’s Disease, heart disease, cancer, obesity, and osteoporosis. Heart disease, in particular, is a major concern in society. As the single biggest killer of Americans since 1920, heart disease causes 1 in 4 deaths of Americans. Heart attacks strike over 920,000 individuals each year. Diabetes affects over 18.8 million people, with a staggering 7 million undiagnosed.
Many individuals with diabetes suffer from strokes-the risk for stroke is 2-4 times higher in those with diabetes. Cancer is another major disease that affects men and women. 1 in 2 men will experience cancer, along with 1 in 3 women.
In order to avoid these diseases, many people are taking charge of their health. A few of the ways to remain healthy is to avoid excessive alcohol consumption, quit smoking, and begin a diet and exercise regimen.