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Cardiovascular Disease: Progress, But Battle Not Yet Won

January 8, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
The American Heart Association’s new batch of statistics on cardiovascular disease both domestically and internationally shows that mortality rates overall have inched downward since the 1950s, but are still unacceptably high. In the U.S. in 2013, a third of all deaths were from heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular ailments. Globally, 31 percent of deaths were from cardiovascular disease; 80 percent of those occurred in low- and middle-income countries. The problem is especially severe among African-American adults: 48 percent of women and 46 percent of men have some form of cardiovascular disease. Key lifestyle factors contributing to cardiovascular disease are smoking, lack of exercise, and poor diet. Nineteen percent of American men and 15 percent of women smoked in 2014, though there was a 30 percent drop in smoking since 1998.
Dariush Mozaffarian et al., "Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics—2016 Update. ", Circulation, January 08, 2016, © American Heart Association, Inc.
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