The Bloomberg Global Health Index has declared Italy as the healthiest country in the world. The survey ranked 163 countries based on parameters such as life expectancy, high blood pressure, the cause of death, malnutrition, availability of clean water, and use of tobacco.
The top rank implied that Italians have lower blood pressure and cholesterol. According to researchers, the better health of Italians has a lot to do with their diet, which is rich in olive oil, lean meats, fish, and fresh vegetables. The land of pasta also has doctors advising people to take at least a glass of wine every day.
Higher Life Span And Preventive Care
Italians also enjoy better access to healthcare with more doctors to serve people despite the growth issues in the economy. Most of the population is covered by the preventive care that keeps them healthy to shrug off diseases from the very early stage.
The other four slots in the top five club are occupied by Iceland, Switzerland, Singapore, and Australia.
While the United States is ranked at 34th, most EU countries, Japan, Israel, and Canada are ahead of it.
In this healthiest country, a new born baby can expect a life span of 80 years. This is in contrast to Sierra Leone that is less than 3,000 miles to the south, where the longevity is just 52.
More Doctors Despite Economic Issues
Italy maintains its edge in healthcare despite challenges to its economic model of development. Though ranked as a most developed country, Italy's growth has been under stress with 40 percent of youth out of work and a huge debt disproportionate to the size of the economy looming as serious issues.
According to Tom Kenyon, a physician and CEO of the global relief organization Project Hope, Italy has "an excess of doctors." The attention of Italians on matters of health can be understood from the popularity of the television show called "A Doctor in the Family."
Another highlight is the greening in the diet of Italians which is richer in vegetables and olive oil.
In the matter of obesity, United States is ahead and is one of the heaviest nations in the world with overweight people at 67.3 percent. Another area of concern is the rising maternal mortality rate in the United States when it is declining globally.
At No. 34 the U.S health grade is 73.05 out of 100.
In the United States, Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, and West Virginia are the heaviest with 35 percent obese people, according to U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
However, the recent World Happiness Report for 2017 by the United Nations ranked Italy at 48 out of 155 countries. This shows strong health and long life are not translating to so much of happiness.