Yes it sounds extreme, but it could be our reality. If healthcare spending continues to increase at its current rate, It is estimated that by the year 2040 that 100% of the federal budget will go towards Medicare and Medicaid. That's 100% - meaning no money for anything else.
According to the latest CDC report, 1 in 2 American adults have a chronic disease and 1 in 4 have multiple chronic diseases. Roughly 40% of adults and 20% of adolescents are obese. 30% of children have a chronic disease, up from 13% in 1994. These numbers represent a massive burden to not only to our healthcare system, but our country.
We know that 100 million Americans are prediabetic or have Type 2 diabetes. That's 1/3 of the population. And 88% of people who are prediabetic don't know they are. Now consider the average cost of treating an individual with Type 2 diabetes is $14,000. When you do the math the numbers are staggering beyond belief - and it's only for diabetes!
There is no sustainable way to pay for the rising costs associated with the treatment of chronic disease. It's a major issue that needs to come to forefront of serious conversation with the realization of the personal responsibility we all need to assume in the prevention of these diseases.
Yes they are preventable and no the reason is not just your genetics. 85% of disease risk comes from behavioral and environmental factors while only 15% is related to genetic factors. Meaning the vast majority of chronic disease risk factors are under our control and there needs to be an emphasis on this point.
The solution must have a primary focus on prevention and reversal of disease rather than merely suppressing symptoms. We need to take control of our behaviors as they relate to our lifestyle choices. Choices such as getting adequate physical activity/exercise, nutrition, sleep, and stress management become the real medicine because they have THE biggest impact on our health. And there needs to be more personal responsibility assumed in these areas.
If you won't do it for yourself, do it for America.