MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — New research shows the U.S. is falling behind other countries in just about every measure of health, including how long people live. Two of the main reasons are poor diet and lack of exercise.

Researchers found heart disease is by far the leading cause of premature death, followed by lung cancer, then stroke.

In comparison to 34 similar countries, the U.S. ranks 27th for its mortality rate, life expectancy and risk of dying from dietary factors.

The study also shows Americans are living longer, an average of 78 years in 2010. But many are not in good health and are dealing with chronic disabilities like mental health disorders, substance abuse and problems like low back pain.

“The US spends the most on healthcare and actually gets rather mediocre outcomes compared to other nations,” Dr. Christopher Murray, with the Institute for Health Metrics & Evaluation, said.

Researchers found diet, tobacco, obesity and high blood pressure are the top reasons why Americans are less healthy.


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