Education and income not only make you wiser and wealthier; they also
are linked to health and longevity.
Educated, wealthy live healthier, longer lives
By Mike Snider
People who at least finish high school may live two to five years longer
than those who don't, finds one of several studies in today's New England
Journal of Medicine.
And another study finds the poorest people had 3 to 7 times' higher rates
of early death than the richest.
In fact, the studies of blacks and whites suggest status is a more important
risk factor than race or even smoking, says NEJ editor Marcia Angell.
"No one knows quite how" status affects health, she says, but in addition
to social and political costs of inequity, "We are now learning that the medical
costs are also very high."
More findings from researchers at the National Center for Health Statistics:
>Among people ages 25 to 64, those earning less than $9,000 annually has
a death rate 3 to 7 times higher than those earning $25,000 or more.
>Among people age 65 or older, those who had 12-plus years of education
lived 2.4 to 3.9 more healthy years than those with less education.
Education seems to increase how long a person lives actively and independently,
says Dr. Jack Guralnik, National Institute on Aging. Luckily, "education level
is a risk factor that can be changed," he says.
NEWS ARTICLE:The United
States ranks 17th in average life expectancy on a list of 32 developed nations
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