Promotion and support of healthy lifestyle are not only important at the personal level, but it is also a concern of the society and higher instances in general, so in our healthiest countries in the world 2017 list we will see which countries have the most success in this.
Interestingly, and somewhat contradictory, some of the countries listed on healthiest countries in the world 2017 also have one of the biggest problems of 21st century, and that is obesity, as you can see in 10 Most Obese Countries in Europe. And that brings us to one of the very important factors for our health, and that is nutrition. We are surrounded by the junk food chains and fast food in general which is connected to the busy modern way of life, but it brings severe consequences in terms of health. So what is the secret in healthiest countries diet? Balance and variety in the input of some important nutrients that are included in various foods: fish (rich in omega 3 fatty acids), nuts, whole grains, eggs, lots of vegetables, olive oil and moderate consumption of alcohol for example. That is why Italy is one of the healthiest countries, having a diet rich in vegetables and olive oil, among other factors.
Another factor that impacts good health is physical exercise. As you will see, most of the healthiest countries are also at the top of thinnest skinniest fittest countries in the world list, having good daily habits of exercising.
So, combined, good diet and exercising on regular basis have a good impact on health. On the contrary, obesity, alcohol and tobacco use are one of the health’s worst enemies. Some of the unhealthiest countries in the world are among the top in the use of tobacco and alcohol. That brings Eastern Europe as the region with the least healthy countries in the world, according to research, having heavy drinking culture and high obesity rate.
The first question we had asked when we started the research on healthiest countries in the world in 2017 was which parameters we should use in order to get reasonable results. For that, we needed to somehow round all the factors and data concerning health in general mortality rate, life expectancy, all kinds of diseases, country’s wealth, nutrition, environmental pollution, etc. So, we searched for some kind of data that would cover the most of these questions, and we have found in this article published by the Lancet, the most reliable data. The parameter we have based our healthiest countries in the world 2017 list was the health-related Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) index, which consists of 33 health-related SDG indicators. These indicators include poverty levels, nutrition (hunger vs. overweight), mortality (which include maternal mortality, childbirth, and infant mortality), diseases, suicide rates, alcohol and tobacco use, road injuries, clean water, air pollution, to name few. Health-related SDG takes values from 0-worst to 100-best. So, since these scores are values of combined indicators, you might get surprised not to find some countries on our list, like Italy we have mentioned earlier, as one of the healthiest countries when taken in account diet or only several factors.
The second parameter we have taken in mind as one of the most important ones is healthy life expectancy at birth, that we took to compare the healthiest countries by the World Health Organization, and it was taken from their latest World Health Statistics 2017. Just as the example, all the healthiest countries in the world in 2017 have life expectancy at birth more than 70 years, comparing to some of the poorest and countries with sanitation and pollution problems. Those countries are for example Zimbabwe (with life expectancy at birth with only 52.3 years), Guinea (51.7) or South Sudan (49.9).
Let’s now see which countries care most about health on our list of healthiest countries in the world 2017 list:
Health-related SDG index: 79
Denmark is one of the healthiest countries in the world 2017, also being the happiest and one of the wealthiest as well. The Danish tobacco consumption rate is among the lowest in the EU, though the problem represents high consumption of alcohol, having 37% adults heavily drinking.
We are continuing with two countries which share the 14th place in healthiest countries in the world 2017 list.