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Lowering the Boom

Baby boomers (i.e., folks born between 1946 and 1964) tend to believe they enjoy improved health over the previous generation.  However, research seems to indicate otherwise.  In fact, a study from the West Virginia University School of Medicine found that baby boomers were less likely to be as healthy as their parents.

 

And the good news?

Deaths from heart disease, stroke, and certain cancers are declining.  In short, people seem to be living longer.  Yet, high blood pressure (a.k.a., hypertension), diabetes, high cholesterol, and obesity levels are climbing.  Since these conditions by and large appear chronically, ongoing use of prescription medication is increasing.  A yearly report from the CDC‘s National Health Statistics reveals that almost half of the people 55-64 take a heart drug, and nearly 20% take diabetes medication.  When we stop to consider that baby boomers represent more than 25% of the population in America, the implications seem rather troubling.

 

What does this mean?

Well, chronic conditions place a considerable burden on both the patient and health care system.  In fact, chronic illness gobbles up over 75% of the money spent on health care in this country.

 

Why is this happening?

Various reasons come in to play.  Naturally, genetics and inactivity are two likely culprits.  Concurrently, the foods we eat are important to observe when examining a wellness picture.

For example, a number of people realize that trans fats and processed foods are unwholesome options and limit or eliminate these items from their kitchens.  Then again, some of those same individuals are unaware that hidden ingredients like high fructose corn syrup, artificial preservatives, food colorings, sugars, pesticide residue, etc., repeatedly show up in the meals they make.

 

What can we do?

Clearly, prevention is the best treatment: get up and move throughout the day (movement is pivotal) and consistently be attentive to the foods you choose (read ingredients).  At the same time, remember that if an illness does strike, it is never too late to adopt an improved way of life.  Still, it would be unmindful not to mention that some people do a lot of the things they should and unremitting conditions find them.  In this case, it always makes sense to stay on a healthy nutritional path.

 

True, death rates may be falling, but more baby boomers are persistently sick.  Fortunately, beneficial lifestyle changes can help this demographic (and others) lower the boom on a range of chronic illnesses.  For additional information regarding this topic, go to http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2015/06/05/medicare-costs-seniors-sick-chronic-conditions/27390925/

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