Animal Action Network
A non-profit Colorado Group Working for Compassion
Chronic Diseases are long-term diseases that are not contagious and largely preventable. They include diseases such as obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, osteoporosis, and dental diseases and present a growing burden for society. In 2001, chronic diseases accounted for approximately 60% of deaths worldwide. Almost half of these deaths are attributed to cardiovascular diseases. In addition, obesity and diabetes already affect a large proportion of the population and have, worryingly, started to appear earlier in life. Shifts towards a high-fat, energy-dense diet and a sedentary lifestyle, first occurred in industrial regions and more recently also in developing countries. Factors that can increase the risk of developing chronic diseases are an unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, tobacco use, and alcohol consumption. Genetic and economic factors, also play a role in developing these diseases. As chronic diseases are largely preventable, a global strategy on diet, physical activity and health is needed. Changes in the diet that may be helpful in reducing the risk of chronic diseases include eating a diet that is low in fat and sugars and rich in fruits, vegetables and wholegrain foods.