This is the #1 Cause of Dying Too Soon, Science Shows
The average lifespan in the United States is 78.6 years, however, "Each year, nearly 900,000 Americans die prematurely from the five leading causes of death – yet 20 percent to 40 percent of the deaths from each cause could be prevented, according to a study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention." Healthy lifestyle choices like a balanced diet, exercising 150 minutes a week and routine checkups can help lower the risk of premature death and Eat This, Not That! Health spoke with Dr. Bayo Curry-Winchell, Urgent Care Medical Director and Physician, Carbon Health and Saint Mary's Hospital who shares the top five causes of dying too soon and ways to avoid premature death. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.
Dr. Curry-Winchell reminds us, "Tobacco significantly increases a person's risk for developing heart disease, cancer and infections by damaging the heart and blood vessels ultimately reducing blood flow to your organs. Per the CDC, the life expectancy for smokers is at least 10 years shorter than for non-smokers. Quitting smoking before the age of 40 reduces the risk of dying from smoking-related disease by about 90%."
Dr. Curry-Winchell states, "A disease that is often referred to as the "silent killer," causes damage to blood vessels by reducing oxygen and blood flow to the heart. Per the WHO, hypertension is a major cause of premature death worldwide. Checking your blood pressure and sharing your findings with your healthcare provider can reduce your overall risk of early death."
According to Dr. Curry-Winchell, "Weight gain in combination with other chronic conditions may increase your risk of having a premature death. This is mainly due to excess fat around your organs and buildup of cholesterol (within vessels) also referred to as plaque which increases your risks of a cardiac or neurological event such as a heart attack or stroke."
Pregnancy Related Death
Dr. Curry-Winchell explains, "Per the CDC most pregnancy related deaths are preventable and approximately 50,000 people each year experience labor or deliver with unexpected outcomes and Black women are three times more likely to die from a pregnancy-related cause than White women. There are many factors that play a role including limited access to high quality care, implicit medical bias, as well as environmental and financial barriers."
The American Cancer Society states, "Cancer continues to be the second most common cause of death in the US, after heart disease. A total of 1.9 million new cancer cases and 609,360 deaths from cancer are expected to occur in the US in 2022, which is about 1,670 deaths a day."
Dr. Curry-Winchell urges, "Know your risk factors (personal and family). Getting screened for early detection, lifestyle choices (avoidance of smoking, alcohol and processed foods) and remaining physically active can decrease your risks of a premature cancer death."