Icelanders Smoke Less than Most

Vala Hafstað

A new report by OECD on preventable diseases, Health at a Glance, reveals that among OECD countries, Iceland and Mexico are the countries where the rate of those who smoke is the lowest, or less than 10 percent, mbl.is reports. The rate is the lowest in Mexico, or 7.6 percent, and second lowest in Iceland, or 8.6 percent. By contrast, more than a quarter of the population of Greece, Turkey and Hungary smokes.

The report furthermore shows that avoidable mortality rates, that is, from preventable and treatable causes, were the lowest in Switzerland, Iceland, Japan, Sweden and Norway,  In all these countries, fewer than 300 per 100,000 inhabitants died prematurely.

This rate, by contrast, was the highest in Latvia, Lithuania and Hungary, or more than 800 per 100,000 inhabitants.

According to the report, smoking, alcohol consumption, and obesity are the three main risk factors when it comes to non-communicable diseases. Air pollution is a large risk factor as well.

Moreover, the report shows that in Iceland, alcohol consumption of people 15 years of age and older is close to the OECD average, and the same can be said about the rate of those who are overweight or battle obesity in Iceland. Still, the report states that the rate of those who are overweight is likely underestimated in Iceland, since it is self-reported.

Cases of deaths that can be attributed to air pollution are fewer in Iceland than in other countries, or 16.9 per 100,000 inhabitants.

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