Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Kill Cows, Save Lives?

There's new noise on the Mediterranean diet and its heart disease prevention properties. It seems sensible and is certainly tasty enough. I got curious as to what kills Americans anyway and found this from the CDC on mortality in the USA:
  • Number of deaths: 2,468,435
  • Death rate: 799.5 deaths per 100,000 population
  • Life expectancy: 78.7 years
  • Infant Mortality rate: 6.15 deaths per 1,000 live births

Number of deaths for leading causes of death:

  • Heart disease: 597,689
  • Cancer: 574,743
  • Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 138,080
  • Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 129,476
  • Accidents (unintentional injuries): 120,859
  • Alzheimer's disease: 83,494
  • Diabetes: 69,071
  • Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 50,476
  • Influenza and Pneumonia: 50,097
  • Intentional self-harm (suicide): 38,364
So Alzheimer's is a much bigger deal than I thought, and of course tobacco use, but the cow? What if only 10% of heart attacks each year are from eating red meat? (The New England Journal of Medicine says it's over 30%)By outlawing the meat of the cow we would still save nearly 60,000 lives. Tell me again why pot is illegal?

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