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Americans' Still in Love with SSBs

U.S. population struggling to kick the sugar-sweetened beverage habit.

The National Center for Health Statistics released consumption data (2011-2014) showing almost one-half of U.S. adults drink at least one sugar-sweetened beverage every day. Young adults have the highest average intake compared to older adults. Learn more and view the startling statistics by clicking on this link.

PositiveTip: The healthiest drink for most people is plain tap water--it has no  sugar, no calories, and many benefits!

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U.S. Dietary Report Card

Improvements in some components are good, but much more progress is needed!

Americans are eating significantly more whole grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes, as well as fruit, according to an analysis of NHANES data from 1999-2012. Consumption of 100% fruit juice and sugar-sweetened beverages decreased as well. However, vegetable intake did not change. The good news: diets rated as ideal increased from 0.7% to 1.5%. The not-so-good news: nearly half of all adults still consume poor quality diets.

PositiveTip: Make choices at each meal to eat more good foods and less poor quality foods. Together we can improve even more!

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Report Card on Obesity

Obesity rates are now nearly the same for men and women.

Efforts to reduce obesity rates in the U.S. appear to be working. During the past year obesity rates remained steady in all but one state, Arkansas. This is good news, as rates have been climbing for the past 30 years. Obesity remains very high though, and the nation's future health depends on further reductions.

PositiveTip: Make physical activity and healthy eating the cornerstone of your lifestyle!

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Report Card: Fewer Now Smoking

American's are breathing easier--they are smoking less today.

Only 18% of U.S. adults now identify themselves as smokers according to the National Health Interview Survey 2012. This is down a full percentage point since last year, and down from almost 25% in 1997. Smoking related deaths still take a big toll, but if smoking prevalence continues to drop, even this will improve over time.

PositiveTip: Choose not to smoke or use any tobacco products. It is the healthiest choice!

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People Living Longer, but Living Sicker

It's not getting older that costs more healthcare dollars, its getting old with risk.

Americans may live longer thanks to the availability of advanced medical care, but the proliferation of chronic diseases and preventable problems lowers the quality of life. Almost 10% of the population has diabetes, 27.8% are obese, and 30.8% are diagnosed with hypertension. A fascinating fact in this report is that low-risk people over 50 cost less than those 30+ years old at high risk!

PositiveTip: The healthful choices you make to lower risk may yield more than all the medical breakthroughs!

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Health, United States, 2011

Report card on U.S. health trends and statistics now available for 2011.

We know our readers are interested in health and life choices. You may be interested in the report card released each year by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control on the health of the nation. In Brief provides a summary of the larger report in text, tables, and graphs. For those who are more data-obsessed, the report is available for download in its entirety or in sections.

PositiveTip: Make positive life choices each day to improve this report card in the years to come.

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Waistlines Expand in the USA

The USA is one of the heaviest countries in the world.

A new study reveals that among high-income countries, the USA has experienced the fastest growth in body mass index (BMI) between 1980 and 2008. It also had the highest average BMI in 2008: 28.5 for men and 28.3 for women. Only Nauru in Oceania exceeded this with BMIs of 33.9 and 35 respectively. 

PositiveTip: Let's move more and eat less to change these trends!

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Top Five Causes of Death in the U.S. for 2008

Stroke is now the 4th leading cause of death in the USA.

Preliminary data from the US Centers for Disease Control indicates that stroke has slipped to the 4th leading cause of U.S. deaths in 2008. The top five causes of death in the U.S. are:

  1. Heart disease
  2. Cancer
  3. Chronic lower respiratory diseases
  4. Stroke
  5. Accidents

The reduction of stroke deaths is due in part to improved prevention along with greater use of medications to treat and prevent recurrent events.

PositiveTip: Careful positive choices will reduce the risk of each of these top killers! How are you doing?