Health New Health & Lifestyle Maps of Europe

Maciamo

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Over the last few weeks I have been working on 20 new maps (more coming soon) showing indicators of health, activity, food and drink consumptions in and around Europe. Please visit the link. I will just post three of them here to illustrate.

I was inspired in part by the discussion about the aggravating factors for Covid-19.

Heart_disease.png



Anxiety_rates.png



Coffee_consumption.png
 
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Over the last few weeks I have been working on 20 new maps (more coming soon) showing indicators of health, activity, food and drink consumptions in and around Europe. Please visit the link. I will just post three of them here to illustrate.

I was inspired in part by the discussion about the aggravating factors for Covid-19.

Heart_disease.png



Anxiety_rates.png



Coffee_consumption.png

Very interesting.

Lots of fast metabolizers of caffeine in the Scandinavian countries, clearly. They have to keep loading up. :)

As for anxiety disorders, I'd say probably people in Russia, for example, have to worry and be anxious about surviving. Perhaps they don't have time to think about whether they have an overall anxiety disorder.

The life expectancy maps are as expected. Italy (and Iceland?) have the most long lived people, especially long lived women. I don't have multiple great aunts over 80 and even 90 for nothing. :)

I think the low influenza and pneumonia death rates in Italy might be heavily influenced by the fact that we give elderly people the influenza vaccine.

One really surprised me: Italy consumes as much meat as Germany and less than Britain. When did that happen? :)

The number of steps, which could roughly be held to stand for "movement", doesn't strictly correlate with obesity or health.

Maybe sugar really is the enemy...
 
Lots of fast metabolizers of caffeine in the Scandinavian countries, clearly. They have to keep loading up. :)

I think it has more to do with the depressing weather and low light in autumn and winter in northern Europe. I also feel the need to drink much more tea and coffee when the air pressure is low, the sky overcast and the daylight is so limited. That's in Belgium, so I can surely understand how they need it even more in Nordic countries.

As for anxiety disorders, I'd say probably people in Russia, for example, have to worry and be anxious about surviving. Perhaps they don't have time to think about whether they have an overall anxiety disorder.

Worry about survival is still worry/anxiety. I think that it has more to do with the fact that the data must be reported to doctors (psychiatrists) or psychologists and there may be a reluctance among Slavic and Baltic people (who all score low for anxiety and depression) to seek professional help. It may be a cultural thing. They may want to appear tough or may be reluctant to admit they need to see a shrink. It's either that or Slavic people developed some genetic resistance to anxiety and depression. But the former seems more likely.

The number of steps, which could roughly be held to stand for "movement", doesn't strictly correlate with obesity or health.

Maybe sugar really is the enemy...

I was surprised too to see that there was hardly any correlation between obesity, physical exercice and also diabetes. The UK is the most overweight country in Europe, but it has the lowest rate of diabetes. People in the Balkans are relatively slim but have high diabetes. Sugar consumption is very high in all the northern half of Europe, yet countries like Denmark, The Netherlands, Switzerland and Austria are among the thinnest in Europe. Lots of Turkish people are overweight even though sugar consumption is much lower than in these countries.

I would have thought that higher meat consumption would lead to lower life expectancy, but Spaniards eat the most meat and live very long lives.

One relatively good correlation is between alcohol consumption and cancer death rates. It's cancer death rates though, so the quality of healthcare has a role too. The correlation is probably better with cancer rates. We see that Muslim countries, where alcohol is (mostly) prohibited have low cancer rates. Iceland, Italy, Bosnia, Albania and Greece have lower alcohol consumption than the European average and also lower cancer rates.

Alcohol_consumption.png



Cancer_rate.png
 
I have added a map of olive oil consumption per capita.

Oilve_oil_consumption.png
 
Given this breakdown, perhaps Northern Italians are the longest lived population in Europe?

gv6sIE5.png



If so, what would explain it? It's not exercise or walking. (Although, while older Italian people are not going jogging, they are moving around their houses and yards, cooking, cleaning and gardening.) It's not eating less meat.

So, in terms of environmental factors, what is it? Perhaps it's low amounts of alcohol consumption, high amounts of olive oil, low drug related deaths, low suicide rate (which correlates with lower levels of depression)?

Connection to family and friends, feeling valued and necessary are bound to be factors, a characteristic which is hurting them with Covid 19.

Also, a good health system, and there's bound to be a genetic component. There is for everything else.
 
You can see the life expectancy of European regions on Wikipedia. Wealthy regions tend to score higher everywhere. A mild climate and healthy cuisine is also important.

Region (NUTS2)CountryLife expectancy at birth,
total
Life expectancy at birth,
men
Life expectancy at birth,
woman
Community of Madrid
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
85.282.287.8
Ticino
16px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png
Switzerland
85.082.786.9
Castile and León
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
84.381.387.4
La Rioja
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
84.381.487.2
Trentino
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.381.686.9
Île-de-France (Paris Metro)
23px-Flag_of_France.svg.png
France
84.281.386.8
Lake Geneva
16px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png
Switzerland
84.281.786.4
Bolzano
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.181.586.6
Inner London - West
23px-Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom.svg.png
United Kingdom
84.182.186.1
Navarre
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
84.181.387.0
Umbria
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.181.886.1
Central Switzerland
16px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png
Switzerland
84.082.485.7
Lombardy
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.081.586.3
Marche
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.081.586.4
Basque Country
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
83.980.787.1
Catalonia
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
83.980.986.7
Corsica
23px-Flag_of_France.svg.png
France
83.980.687.1
Rhône-Alpes
23px-Flag_of_France.svg.png
France
83.980.986.7
 
Age is one of the factors of risk for cancer and other diseases, but I see that there is not a perfect correlation between life expectancy and cancer.
@Maciamo
Thanks for these maps.
@Angela
Out of curiosity (not directly related)...
But you likely saw this before (?):
https://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/13/well/eat/how-the-sugar-industry-shifted-blame-to-fat.html



Life expectancy is tied to a lot of factors, not just cancer. For one thing, heart disease still kills more people, and then there are diseases caused by substance abuse and suicide.

I'm convinced sugar is bad for you. Looking at the maps Maciamo posted, I think there's a correlation with the level of sugar consumption and the level of heart disease. High meat consumption might impact cancer rates more often. There were a lot of papers tying high levels of meat consumption to colon cancer, if I remember correctly.

The Balkans throws things off because their life expectancy is impacted by high levels of alcohol use, smoking, etc.
 
You can see the life expectancy of European regions on Wikipedia. Wealthy regions tend to score higher everywhere. A mild climate and healthy cuisine is also important.

Region (NUTS2)CountryLife expectancy at birth,
total
Life expectancy at birth,
men
Life expectancy at birth,
woman
Community of Madrid
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
85.282.287.8
Ticino
16px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png
Switzerland
85.082.786.9
Castile and León
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
84.381.387.4
La Rioja
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
84.381.487.2
Trentino
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.381.686.9
Île-de-France (Paris Metro)
23px-Flag_of_France.svg.png
France
84.281.386.8
Lake Geneva
16px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png
Switzerland
84.281.786.4
Bolzano
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.181.586.6
Inner London - West
23px-Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom.svg.png
United Kingdom
84.182.186.1
Navarre
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
84.181.387.0
Umbria
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.181.886.1
Central Switzerland
16px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png
Switzerland
84.082.485.7
Lombardy
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.081.586.3
Marche
23px-Flag_of_Italy.svg.png
Italy
84.081.586.4
Basque Country
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
83.980.787.1
Catalonia
23px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png
Spain
83.980.986.7
Corsica
23px-Flag_of_France.svg.png
France
83.980.687.1
Rhône-Alpes
23px-Flag_of_France.svg.png
France
83.980.986.7

All of these areas except central Switzerland and perhaps the Paris Metro region, although the latter is going to have a lot of southerners living there, are more "Mediterranean", with more "Mediterranean" eating habits.

The longevity for similarly rich but northern European areas is generally lower.

Brussels
23px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png
Belgium
81.378.484.0
Antwerp
23px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png
Belgium
82.480.284.5
All of the German areas are pretty much the same.

Mediterraneans from rich areas, and particularly Northern Italians live the longest.
 
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is there a map on the split between vegie and meat eaters by euro nations ?

I recall ( about 10 years ago ), Italy is a 60-40 split favoring vegies over meat at their diet, at a normal sitting

while greece is the reverse


In Australia, my family was the same in % of vegies over meat as well as my in-laws, cousins etc ............always slightly more vegies than meat ......................plus Lamb was a no no for us and also in italy from all accounts on both sides of the family
so meat ..........equally eaten...was Fish, Chicken, Duck and Pork
then a long way back came Beef
then Goat, Deer
and the story is both families as well as relatives, all avoided Lamb ............................we follow this here

to Finalise.............Pasta once a week and Risotto twice a week ( a soup one and a non-soup one ) ...........although I liked my Risotto , a la Onda style ( like a wave )
 
is there a map on the split between vegie and meat eaters by euro nations ?

I recall ( about 10 years ago ), Italy is a 60-40 split favoring vegies over meat at their diet, at a normal sitting

I couldn't find data for enough countries in Europe to make a map. It seems that the highest percentage of vegetarians in Europe is in Switzerland (14%), followed by Italy, Germany and Sweden (10%), then Austria (9%), Poland (8%), Belgium and the UK (7%).
 
All of these areas except central Switzerland and perhaps the Paris Metro region, although the latter is going to have a lot of southerners living there, are more "Mediterranean", with more "Mediterranean" eating habits.

The longevity for similarly rich but northern European areas is generally lower.

Brussels
23px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png
Belgium
81.378.484.0
Antwerp
23px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png
Belgium
82.480.284.5
All of the German areas are pretty much the same.

Mediterraneans from rich areas, and particularly Northern Italians live the longest.

Brussels is a city with very strong socio-economic inequalities. According to the Belgian RTBF News, the life expectancy in Brussels is 85 years in the wealthiest neighbourhoods (like Woluwe) and 80 years in the poorest. That's a 5 years gap - as much as between Italy and Estonia (or Cuba). In other words, life expectancy in the good parts of Brussels is as high as in Madrid or Ticino, at the top of the European regions. The lowest has the same life expectancy as Chile or Costa Rica.

Life expectancy in the USA is even lower, at 78.9 years. The longest lived states are Hawaii (82.3), California (81.6) then New York (81.3). If we look at the county level, the top 3 counties are all in Colorado and have tiny populations (about 100,000 people for the 3 combined). The first sizeable county is Marin County, California (similar population as the wealthier neighbourhoods of East Brussels) with a life expectancy of 83.8 years.
 
I couldn't find data for enough countries in Europe to make a map. It seems that the highest percentage of vegetarians in Europe is in Switzerland (14%), followed by Italy, Germany and Sweden (10%), then Austria (9%), Poland (8%), Belgium and the UK (7%).


ok...np

I meant , that italians in a sitting would consume 60% of vegies and 40 % meat

my family , would always have I meat dish and 3 vegie dishes for each sitting ..................if no Polenta
if Polenta.....1 meat dish and 2 vegies dishes
 
These are the so-called Blue Zones, where people supposedly live the longest: Nuoro + Ogliastra provinces, Italy; Okinawa, Japan; Icaria, Greece; Nicoya, Costa Rica; and Loma Linda, California.
What would be their secrets? :)

blue-zones.jpg
 
Brussels is a city with very strong socio-economic inequalities. According to the Belgian RTBF News, the life expectancy in Brussels is 85 years in the wealthiest neighbourhoods (like Woluwe) and 80 years in the poorest. That's a 5 years gap - as much as between Italy and Estonia (or Cuba). In other words, life expectancy in the good parts of Brussels is as high as in Madrid or Ticino, at the top of the European regions. The lowest has the same life expectancy as Chile or Costa Rica.

Life expectancy in the USA is even lower, at 78.9 years. The longest lived states are Hawaii (82.3), California (81.6) then New York (81.3). If we look at the county level, the top 3 counties are all in Colorado and have tiny populations (about 100,000 people for the 3 combined). The first sizeable county is Marin County, California (similar population as the wealthier neighbourhoods of East Brussels) with a life expectancy of 83.8 years.

I was posting about Europe and comparing the Northern European countries to the Southern European countries.

Even if this is true for Brussels, is it true for all of those Northern European areas, virtually all of which have a lower life expectancy than Southern European ones with a reasonably good standard of living?

Also, I'd point out that Lombardia and Emilia Romagna, in particular, have very high levels of immigrants with a much lower standard of living, especially North African Moroccans and Sub-Saharan Africans. So, the relative comparison would probably remain the same.

fig3_gr.gif

A very large percentage of the Moroccan population lives in Northern Italy.

https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/149432/1/826099629.pdf

Diet and lifestyle, i.e. very moderate levels of alcohol consumption etc.

figure-1-total-alcohol-consumption-per-capita.png




I think looking at cigarette use may not capture the whole story as it pertains to tobacco use...

There's this...

Proportion_of_daily_smokers_of_cigarettes_by_level_of_consumption%2C_2014_%28%25_persons_aged_15_and_over%29.png


And then there's snus use, which is very high in all the Scandinavian countries...
epidemiology-of-tobacco-use-in-sweden-the-country-with-europes-lowest-level-of-tobaccorelated-disease-2-728.jpg




_108797106_fc2e6ed1-46a7-4c7d-9a45-2e9b1780aa9b-nc.png
 
Two more:

fpubh-03-00280-t001.jpg


chartoftheday_10320_drug_deaths_in_europe_n.jpg
 
These are the so-called Blue Zones, where people supposedly live the longest: Nuoro + Ogliastra provinces, Italy; Okinawa, Japan; Icaria, Greece; Nicoya, Costa Rica; and Loma Linda, California.
What would be their secrets? :)

blue-zones.jpg

Off the cuff: high plant and fruit consumption, low alcohol use, low tobacco use, strong social connections...

Then I looked it up. :) I figured some one must have tried to do a comparison...

blue-zones-venn.gif

Power9Circle.jpg


The 80% rule means stop eating when you're 80% full. My dad used to say: push back from the table when you're still a little hungry. :)

I believe all of it. That's how all my relatives who approached 100 lived.
 
Off the cuff: high plant and fruit consumption, low alcohol use, low tobacco use, strong social connections...

Then I looked it up. :) I figured some one must have tried to do a comparison...

blue-zones-venn.gif

Power9Circle.jpg


The 80% rule means stop eating when you're 80% full. My dad used to say: push back from the table when you're still a little hungry. :)

I believe all of it. That's how all my relatives who approached 100 lived.
Thanks, Angela. Very interesting!

I'd expect faith is a feature of Sardinians as well.
By the way, a remarkable feature of Seulo, in Sardinia, would be that men live as long as women there.

I just remembered this 80% rule. My godfather, Italian, used to say the same thing, but without this name. :)
 
These are the so-called Blue Zones, where people supposedly live the longest: Nuoro + Ogliastra provinces, Italy; Okinawa, Japan; Icaria, Greece; Nicoya, Costa Rica; and Loma Linda, California.
What would be their secrets? :)

blue-zones.jpg

Despite all that has been written about Okinawa, it is no longer exceptional for its life expectancy. Okinawa only ranks 27th among Japan's 47 prefectures for life expectancy (nearly one year less than the top prefectures of Nagano and Shiga). It doesn't rank in the top for the ratio of centenarians either.

Likewise Sardinia is not the longest lived regions in Italy. It ranks only 15th out of 20! It is just the province of Nuoro that has a lot of (male) centenarians, but the average life expectancy is actually lower than the national average.

sanit%C3%A0-regioni-italiane.jpg


As for Ikaria, Nicoya and Loma Linda, they have very small populations (8000, 25000 and 24000 respectively), so I think we are dealing with the Texas sharpshooter fallacy due to low sample size and random luck. Such tiny populations are not representative. If you look at life expectancy by zip code in the US, there are plenty of places where the average is 90 years or more. The highest in Texas is apparently Hutto with a 97 years average! In Chatham County, N.C., it falls between 90 and 104 years depending on the zip code. Compared to the best neighbourhoods in the US (or Europe) the so-called Blue Zones are really nothing special. The term was just coined as a media coup by National Geographic.
 
Despite all that has been written about Okinawa, it is no longer exceptional for its life expectancy. Okinawa only ranks 27th among Japan's 47 prefectures for life expectancy (nearly one year less than the top prefectures of Nagano and Shiga). It doesn't rank in the top for the ratio of centenarians either.

Likewise Sardinia is not the longest lived regions in Italy. It ranks only 15th out of 20! It is just the province of Nuoro that has a lot of (male) centenarians, but the average life expectancy is actually lower than the national average.

sanit%C3%A0-regioni-italiane.jpg


As for Ikaria, Nicoya and Loma Linda, they have very small populations (8000, 25000 and 24000 respectively), so I think we are dealing with the Texas sharpshooter fallacy due to low sample size and random luck. Such tiny populations are not representative. If you look at life expectancy by zip code in the US, there are plenty of places where the average is 90 years or more. The highest in Texas is apparently Hutto with a 97 years average! In Chatham County, N.C., it falls between 90 and 104 years depending on the zip code. Compared to the best neighbourhoods in the US (or Europe) the so-called Blue Zones are really nothing special. The term was just coined as a media coup by National Geographic.
Oh! So it would be related to the % of centenarians rather than based on averages. Thanks for checking it out, and thanks for the links (I'll check them when possible).
In the case of Sardinia, it would be true just to specific places, I know, but it looks very interesting anyway, especially considering health care (possibly lower in quality when compared, say, to North Italian).
As a side note, I'd say that relatively high averages may be particularly relevant when they correlate with somewhat poor areas, since other environmental factors, here, could become more meaningful.
My wife's paternal grandfather faced a serious health problem at her 70s, but fortunately she was well treated and finally cured. At the end she reached 100. My wife's maternal grandmother also lived long (not as long as the former though), but she had to stay in bed for years before she passed away. Just examples.
 

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