Communicable diseases like malaria, cholera and polio have become manageable due to recent advancements in medicines. However, a new breed of diseases has developed, called ‘Lifestyle diseases’ such as heart disease, some cancers and diabetes, which are no longer a problem just in wealthy nations. Globally 14.2 million people between the ages of 30-69 years die prematurely each year from these diseases. These diseases have emerged as bigger killers than infectious or hereditary ones. Risk factors for these diseases include tobacco use, unhealthy diets and physical inactivity. Today we will take look at the most common lifestyle diseases that you need to take seriously.
Unhealthy eating habits, super-sizing meals, and reduced physical exercise all translate to obesity. A person with excessive weight suffers with breathing problems, blood pressure, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, etc.
The NFHS figures suggest that currently India ranks second with 155 million obese citizens and are increasing at 33-51% every year.
Type II diabetes
Obesity becomes the cause for other health problems such as Type II Diabetes which is the non-insulin dependent form, and generally develops in adults.
The International Diabetes Federation suggests that India has the largest number of people who suffer with type 2 diabetes at around 40.9 million people.
This is a group of diseases that occur when the arterial blood vessel walls thicken and lose elasticity. Atherosclerosis is when fatty plaques deposit in the arterial walls and cause blood circulation disorders, chest pain, and heart attacks. It is linked with diabetes, obesity and a high BP.Around 30% to 40% of cardiovascular
deaths happen in India among the age group of 34-64 years of age.
This refers to abnormalities that affect the heart muscle and blood vessel walls. The major factors involved in its development are smoking, diabetes and high cholesterol intake. India ranks No.1 in cardiac patients, around 50 million people in India suffer from heart problems.
High blood pressure
When the reading is 140/90 or higher, the BP is considered to be high. Hypertension results from a variety of reasons like stress, obesity, genetic factors, overuse of salt in the diet and ageing. In India, more than 100 million people have high blood pressure.
Swimmer’s ear is inflammation, irritation, or infection of the outer ear and ear canal. Buzzing or ringing ears, or difficulty in understanding speech patterns are its symptoms.
Swimmer’s ears results due to loud music and constant use of headphones. An estimated of 12.5% have suffered permanent damage to their hearing in India from excessive exposure to noise, and the number is growing each year.
Cancer includes any hysterical, irregular cell growth. The types of cancer could include lung cancer due to prolonged smoking, skin cancer due to too much exposure to the sun etc. Cancer killed almost 5,56,400 people across the country in 2011.
A stroke results when a blood vessel carrying blood to the brain has a blockage, thus creating an oxygen deficiency for the area of the brain it was carrying it to. Indian studies have shown that about 10% to 15% of strokes occur in people below the age of 40 years.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
This is a disease described by a progressive, permanent obstruction of the airways. Smoking and air pollution are factors as well as reasons for worsening of this condition. Percentage of adults diagnosed with COBD in the past year: 4.3 million.
Cirrhosis refers to a group of liver disorders. Heavy alcohol consumption and chronic hepatitis may be listed as causes.In India, approximately 36,149 people die each year due to cirrhosis.
This includes kidney disease characterized by swelling of the kidneys and abnormal function. Around 39,480 deaths are estimated due to nephritis each year in India.