Improving Six Risk Factors Could Delay 37 Million Deaths — Physician’s First Watch

Medical News |
May 5, 2014

Improving Six Risk Factors Could Delay 37 Million Deaths

By Kelly Young

Achieving global targets for six modifiable risk factors could delay or prevent roughly 37 million deaths over 15 years, according to a Lancet study.

Researchers used country data on mortality to estimate the effects of achieving the following targets:

  • reducing prevalence of tobacco use by 30%

  • reducing per-person alcohol consumption by 10%

  • reducing mean population consumption of salt by 30%

  • reducing prevalence of hypertension by 25%

  • stopping the increase in diabetes prevalence

  • stopping the increase in obesity prevalence

If all six targets are achieved by 2025, it could lead to a roughly 20% reduction in the probability of premature death (ages 30 to 70) from four noncommunicable diseases. The largest benefits, the authors write, would come from reducing tobacco use and blood pressure.

A commentator writes: "These are remarkable potential health gains in view of the highly cost-effective interventions available, which could be readily scaled up in all countries."

Reader Comments (4)

CHERYL DAVIES Other Healthcare Professional, Cardiology

These are lofty goals, but at the end of the day we are prolonging life for what? So others can criticize that we are increasing the numbers of "olds" (which includes me) to be looked after long term.
At this time we are just delaying the inevitable at considerable cost to the entire system, not just Health Care. We need an integrated approach to health care.

MICHAEL KOOIKER BROSTOSKI Physician, Family Medicine/General Practice, State Prison

Thank you for using the verb "delay" in the header, instead of "prevent".

Jacques Brillot Other, Other, Retired D.V.M in France

After a quick and short survey (reading), I have the feeling that about this country (France), the place given to "alcohol disease" (addiction) is not sufficiently relalted to avoidable deaths.
In other words, belonging to an issue (descendants) where there have been numerous people reached by this kind of ilness. whose life has been shortened by he fact of drinking too much
and too often alcohol containing drinks. Anyway, i know too that tobacco AND alcohol increase the worseness of health and consequently the shortness of life.
At your disposal for more. Sorry for the weakness of my written english. Best regards. Jacques Brillot, born in 1925 <> Paris area.


By consciously addressing healthy sleep I am confident these targets could be met sooner than 2025 and probably involve less direct cost.

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