A recent survey of 3,000 respondents commissioned by Midss.org, an information source for better health, has identified the public’s greatest fears when it comes to diseases. The survey found that cancer is the most feared illness, followed by Alzheimer’s disease and heart disease. Despite these fears, the survey also revealed that a significant proportion of Americans do not take proactive steps to try to prevent these diseases from occurring.
The Top 3 Diseases Feared:
The survey found that Americans fear cancer the most. This concern is understandable, given that cancer is a complex disease that can affect any part of the body and has no known cure. The causes of cancer are also varied and include genetic factors, lifestyle habits, and environmental factors.
#2 Alzheimer’s Disease
The second most feared disease is Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that affects memory, thinking, and behavior. It is the leading cause of dementia, which affects over 50 million people worldwide. The disease has no known cure, and treatment is limited to managing symptoms.
#3 Heart Disease
Heart disease is the third most feared disease in America. Heart disease is a term used to describe several conditions that affect the heart, including coronary artery disease, heart failure, and arrhythmias. These conditions can be caused by various factors, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, and obesity.
Other diseases feared:
#7 Chronic liver disease and cirrhosis
#8 Kidney Disease
#9 Chronic lower respiratory diseases
One alarming discovery from the survey was that almost half (44%) of Americans who are concerned about serious illnesses take no proactive steps (such as regular exercise, healthy eating, avoiding tobacco and excessive alcohol consumption, maintaining a healthy weight, managing stress, getting adequate sleep) to prevent diseases from happening.
Regular exercise is an essential factor in reducing the risk of many diseases, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and some cancers. Healthy eating is another vital factor in reducing the risk of serious illnesses. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein can help to lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, and maintain a healthy weight.
When respondents were quizzed on the main reason they don’t do enough exercise, the majority put it down to their lack of motivation (40%). This was followed by time constraints (34%), limited access to a safe and convenient place to exercise (20%), and 6% even said they didn’t think it was important or necessary to exercise.
Despite the chance of health problems in the future, a surprising 40% of respondents said they regularly and knowingly make poor lifestyle choices.
And finally, when asked what the main reason they don’t eat as healthily as they could do, the majority admitted that they simply prefer unhealthy high-calorie meals (42%). Eighteen percent put it down to emotional eating, 16% blamed it on the lack of time to prepare healthy meals, 14% cited limited access to healthy foods, 8% say there is a social pressure to eat unhealthily, and 2% said they have a lack of knowledge or awareness about healthy eating habits and nutrition.
The full results of the study can be found here.
“It’s clear that more education and awareness is needed to encourage people to take proactive steps to prevent disease. By adopting healthy habits like regular exercise and a nutritious diet, Americans can reduce their risk of these serious illnesses and improve their overall health and well-being” says Logan Nguyen of Midss.org.