Posted on Thu, 18 Jun 09
A research group from University College London and Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, has found that an alarming number of people do not know that lifestyle factors contribute to two of the most prevalent and life threatening diseases; cardiovascular disease and cancer. In a large survey it was found that only 9% and 2% of people could identify four lifestyle risk factors for heart disease and cancer respectively. In fact the report found that, 1 in 10 people could not identify any risk factors at all .
Smoking, physical inactivity, excessive alcohol use, being overweight and unhealthy eating are major risk factors for cardiovascular disease and cancer. For example it has been estimated that if all these lifestyle behaviours were accounted for a woman could reduce her heart diseased risk by 84%. Unfortunately, only 3% of women meet all these healthy behaviours .
- Sanderson SC et al. Awareness of lifestyle risk factors for cancer and heart disease among adults in the UK. Patient Educ Couns. 2009 Feb;74(2):221-7.
- Stampfer MJ et al. Primary prevention of coronary heart disease in women through diet and lifestyle. N Engl J Med 2000;343:16–22.