February 3, 2011
The United States has seen an increase in life expectancy from 1980 to 2007, but Americans still trail behind 21 other developed nations. Researchers, from the National Research Council, have reported that smoking and obesity have reduced Americans average life expectancy by three to four years. Experts suggest that the lack of prevention in the medical system is an important contributor to the American underperformance in increased life expectancy world-wide. The report by the National Research Council also found that the lack of health insurance for 50.7 million people nationwide has increased mortality and reduced life expectancy in the United States, resulting in perhaps 45,000 extra deaths per year.