Saturday, March 19, 2005

Fat young Americans will shorten average life expectancy nationwide

Medical News Today

Researchers from Illinois University say Americans will soon be living shorter lives because the nation's youth is becoming more and more overweight. As these overweight young people get older the average lifespan of an American will get shorter.

Study leader, S Jay Olshansky and team's report can be found in the March 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

The study determines that obesity currently reduces life expectancy by approximately four to nine months.

"The magnitude of that effect may sound trivial to some, but in fact it's greater than the negative effect of all accidental mortality, such as car accidents, suicides and homicides combined," said Olshansky, who is professor of epidemiology in the UIC School of Public Health.