There are many other reasons we die earlier. They have to do with lifestyle, diet, exercise, and overindulgence on things that are bad for us. Here's how a random group of East County residents explains why Americans are dying younger than Europeans as well as people in quite a few other countries.
"It starts with the way we raise our kids," said Carl Roberts of Brentwood. "We're excessive in everything we do for them. We're spoiling them. They end up getting sick before they're 30 from eating too much junk food. And we let them sit around in front of a TV or a computer all day long."
"Americans are gluttons," said Brentwood's Chantel Boitano. "We overconsume just about everything we eat. And we put more pesticides in our food. Europeans who drink and smoke even more than we do live longer."
Donna Crupi of Brentwood blames stress. "Americans are emotionally sick and we lead horrible lifestyles," she said. "We are so money-driven that we haven't enough time to spend with our families. We end up eating everything too fast and we don't eat enough fresh produce."
Antioch's Agnes Seroda also put her finger on
June Dones of Brentwood also pinpoints bad food and lack of exercise. "Eating all that garbage is a killer," he said. "We really take too much for granted and we don't take life seriously enough. We don't exercise enough and it takes a toll on our bodies. We don't listen to what our bodies tell us and we're paying the price for not listening by dying earlier."
"We're all too fat," said Brentwood's Sharon Klaucke. "Fast food and not enough exercise is what kills us off early. We really should be taking diet a lot more seriously if we want to live for a longer time. Spending less time in front of the TV and computers would be a big help."
Adriana Down of Brentwood echoed those sentiments about diet and exercise. "Eating out often also is bad. Food that's prepared outside of the home has too many bad things in it. Prepared food is doctored too much. The other big thing that affects our lives is all the stress we live under."
Chris Perez of Pittsburg goes one step further. "The trouble with the food we eat outside of home is it's loaded with steroids and hormones to improve its taste and to prevent spoiling," he said. "The other bad thing about eating out is the cholesterol you get. Home cooked organic food is much healthier for you."
Oakley's Laurie Murphy feels the same. "So much food now is refined with external products. There's too much sugar and flour in it," she said. "There are other factors in America that cause us to be rated so low in longevity. We live with a lot of environmental pollutants and we're killing ourselves off early on the highways."
Brentwood's Rick Stubbs adds still one other reason. "We don't take enough vacations. People in Europe have much longer vacations and have a more enjoyable living pace," he said. Then he agreed with the others. "Our lifestyle is too sedentary and we eat too much and mostly the wrong kind of food."
Ed Arnow can be reached at BrentwoodBuzz@aol.com.