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The Most Common Preventable Illnesses

As the leading cause of death in the United States, preventable illnesses such as heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and infectious diseases have a major impact on the health of individuals and communities. Although these illnesses are preventable, many people are not aware of the risk factors and ways to prevent them. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is a great resource for information on how to prevent disease.

Lung Cancer

Lung cancer is one of the most preventable forms of cancer, as the primary cause of lung cancer is smoking. Quitting smoking is the single most important action a person can take to prevent lung cancer. In fact, quitting smoking can reduce the risk of developing lung cancer by as much as 50 percent after ten years. Furthermore, avoiding secondhand smoke by staying away from areas where smoking occurs can also reduce the risk of lung cancer.

Additionally, avoiding exposure to radon gas and other hazardous chemicals, such as asbestos, is important to reduce the risk of developing lung cancer. People who have already smoked and have had a history of lung cancer in their family should speak to their doctor about getting screened for lung cancer. Early detection is key for treating and managing lung cancer, and regular screenings can help identify any abnormalities that may indicate the presence of cancer.

Making lifestyle changes, such as exercising regularly, eating a balanced diet and limiting alcohol consumption can also help reduce the risk of developing lung cancer. Finally, vaccinations for certain viruses – such as the human papillomavirus (HPV) – can help reduce the risk of developing certain types of lung cancer. With these simple steps, people can greatly reduce their risk of developing this life-threatening disease.

High Cholesterol

High cholesterol is preventable with lifestyle changes. Eating a healthy diet, engaging in regular physical activity, and avoiding unhealthy behaviors like smoking and excessive alcohol consumption can help prevent and manage high cholesterol levels. Eating a diet rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins can help reduce unhealthy levels of cholesterol. Limiting saturated fats and trans fats can help significantly reduce cholesterol levels. Regular physical activity is also essential in reducing and maintaining healthy cholesterol levels. Aim to get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise per day, such as walking, jogging, biking, or swimming.

Additionally, avoiding unhealthy behaviors like smoking and excessive drinking can help reduce cholesterol levels. If lifestyle changes are not enough to manage cholesterol levels, medications may be necessary to reduce the risk of heart disease. However, it is important to speak to a doctor before beginning any medication. Overall, high cholesterol is preventable with lifestyle modifications, and it is essential to maintain healthy lifestyle habits to reduce the risk of heart disease.

Infectious Diseases

Infectious diseases are those caused by a range of microorganisms, such as viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites, which are spread from person to person. Fortunately, the risk of contracting an infectious disease can be greatly reduced through preventive measures such as vaccination, good hygiene, and proper nutrition. Vaccines are an important tool for preventing the spread of infectious diseases, as they can provide immunity to a person who is exposed to an infectious agent. Vaccines work by exposing a person to a harmless form of the infectious agent, allowing their body to develop antibodies to fight off the infectious agent when exposed.

Good hygiene is also important in preventing the spread of infectious diseases. This includes washing hands regularly with soap and water, and avoiding contact with people who are ill. Proper nutrition is also important for preventing infectious diseases, as a healthy diet boosts the immune system, making it easier for the body to fight off any infectious agents it is exposed to.

Finally, people should be aware of their surroundings and take extra precautions when travelling to areas where infectious diseases are more common. By implementing these preventive measures, people can greatly reduce the risk of contracting an infectious disease and protect themselves and the people around them.


Cancer is a very dangerous, yet preventable disease. It is caused by the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the body that can invade and spread to other parts of the body. These abnormal cells can interfere with the normal functioning of the body and can cause serious health problems. There are many different types of cancer, with some being more deadly than others. The most common types of cancer include lung, breast, colorectal, and prostate cancer.

Cancer can be deadly because it can spread from one part of the body to another, often making it difficult to treat. Furthermore, cancer cells can continue to divide and spread even after treatment, making it difficult to completely remove the cancer from the body. This can lead to recurrences of the disease and even death.

Fortunately, there are many preventative measures that can be taken to reduce the risk of developing cancer. Some of these measures include avoiding smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, eating a balanced diet, limiting alcohol consumption, and avoiding exposure to environmental toxins. Additionally, getting regular check-ups and screenings can help to detect cancer early, when it is most treatable. Taking these preventative measures can help to reduce the risk of developing cancer and increase the chances of successful treatment.

Preventing illnesses is an important part of staying healthy. By understanding the risk factors, taking steps to reduce risk, and getting regular check-ups, individuals can significantly reduce the impact of preventable illnesses. The CDC is a great resource for information on how to prevent disease, and staying informed can help people make informed decisions about their health. If you need to discuss your health insurance options and see how you can save money by preventing illnesses, call Health Benefit Services today and check out our post on the best winter fitness activities!

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