Health class

Enemies of health and allies of poverty join hand to create global havoc, leaving different marks on different classes

 
Last Updated: Saturday 04 July 2015 | 02:50:09 AM

It is now evident that health risks related to consumption are on the rise. Some suffer from plenty, others from scarcity.

Among the 170 million underweight children in poor countries, over 3 million will die this year

Among the 300 million clinically obese people, half a million in only the United States and Western Europe will die this year

More than 60% of deaths worldwide is caused by epidemics of non-communicable diseases, clearly related to changes in dietary patterns. More people are consuming industrially produced fatty, salty and sugar-laden food

Ambient air pollution contributes 0.8 million deaths globally causing trachea, bronchus and lung cancer, cardiorespiratory and respiratory infection mortality.

Climate change claimed 154,000 deaths through diarrhoea, malaria, dengue fever

Worldwide, 10.3% of cancer of the lung, trachea, bronchus, and 2.4% of leukaemia, is caused by occupational exposure to carcinogens like asbestos, arsenic, beryllium, cadmium, chromium, diesel exhaust, nickel and silica

What afflicts
Depends on money?
Developing countries
Percentage
High mortality countries
Underweight
Unsafe sex
Unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene
Indoor smoke from solid fuels
Zinc deficiency
Iron deficiency
Vitamin A deficiency
Blood pressure
Tobacco
Cholesterol
14.9
10.2
5.5
3.6
3.2
3.1
3.0
2.5
2.0
1.9
Low mortality countries
Alcohol
Blood pressure
Tobacco
Underweight
Overweight
Cholesterol
Low fruit and vegetable intake
Indoor smoke from solid fuels
Iron deficiency
Unsafe water, sanitation, hygiene
6.2
5.0
4.0
3.1
2.7
2.1
1.9
1.9
1.8
1.8
Developed countries
Tobacco
Blood pressure
Alcohol
Cholesterol
Overweight
Low fruit and vegetable intake
Physical inactivity
Illicit drugs
Unsafe sex
Iron deficiency
12.2
10.9
9.2
7.6
7.4
3.9
3.3
1.8
0.8
0.7

What inflicts
Depends on how you look after your surroundings
Risk factor Theoretical minimum
exposure
Measured adverse outcome of exposure
Unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene Absence of transmission of diarrhoeal disease through water, sanitation and hygiene practices Diarrhoea
Urban air pollution 7.5 ug/m3 for PM2.5 Cardiovascular mortality, respiratory mortality, lung cancer, mortality from acute respiratory infections in children
Indoor smoke from solid fuels No solid fuel use Acute respiratory infections in children, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer
Lead exposure 0.016 ug/dl blood lead levels Cardiovascular disease, mild mental retardation
Climate change 1961-199 0 concentrations Diarrhoea, flood injury, malaria, malnutrition

Source: The World Health Report, 2002: Reducing Risks, Promoting Health; World Health Organization, 2002

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