Americans Living Longer, but Also Living Sicker
Report finds we're increasingly living with chronic illnesses
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Dec 11, 2012 2:48 PM CST
Updated Dec 15, 2012 7:00 PM CST
   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – The good news: A new report shows that Americans are living longer. The bad news: They're doing so while suffering from more chronic illnesses. The 2012 America's Health Rankings find that, while there are fewer heart disease and cancer deaths, there are more people living with obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure, thanks to the wonders of modern medicine, USA Today reports.

Americans "are living longer, sicker," says a rep from one nonprofit that co-sponsors the report. One possible contributing factor? More than 26% of Americans are sedentary, meaning they haven't engaged in any physical activity other than work for a month. And almost 28% of adults are obese, while nearly 31% have high blood pressure. The healthiest state, for the sixth year running: Vermont.

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Showing 3 of 51 comments
MSCOTTASHLEY
Dec 16, 2012 11:14 AM CST
The longer the HMO's and big Pharma's can keep us alive the more $$$$ they make. If you read the side effects most of the drugs the FDA approves you have to ask WTF? My Mom, 94, would like to die sooner than later and she's better off than many seniors. I support a "Right To Die' law. Dr. Jack was right..
WhateverYouSay
Dec 12, 2012 7:39 AM CST
Here's the reality... many diseases and conditions are simply more likely to afflict people in old age. So if more are living longer, there'll be more bad health. In the "good old days", there weren't as many suffering the chronic diseases of old age because there weren't as many living into old age. The ones who did were those with a genetic predisposition to health and longevity. Nowadays, medical science is keeping genetically weaker people alive longer. My mother, her sister, her grandmother and various other relatives all lived into their 90's... not because they led a healthier life style than most, but because they were blessed with "good genes". I guess I'll probably live long too. But using them as examples, I'm also going for quality of life... exercising more, eating better, not smoking, etc.. not to live longer, but so I can avoid becoming an invalid who isn't able to enjoy life. Those elderly relatives of mine who had healthy lifestyles and avoided a lot of meds have lived better lives, if not longer.
apocalypso
Dec 11, 2012 11:20 PM CST
lol, I have no sympathy for people who cling to this earth longer than 60 years. Living is for the young, these mummies need to pull the plug and get on with it. They could cure a LOT of chronic illness if they'd make peaceful, painless, assisted suicide legal.