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Bad habits 'cause young death'

Tuesday April 27th 2010

Smokers and heavy drinkers who eat poorly and get little exercise could be cutting their life expectancy by up to 12 years - news that shows the value of an income protection insurance policy for the families of those affected.

Scientists in Norway found that people with these "fatal behaviours" were three times more likely to die of heart disease or cancer than their healthy peers.

Study leader Dr Elisabeth Kvaavik, from the University of Oslo, claimed the investigation showed the importance of a healthy lifestyle and called on governments to do more to increase awareness of the risks of bad habits.

"Modest but achievable adjustments to lifestyle behaviours are likely to have a considerable impact at both the individual and population level," she said.

"Developing more efficacious methods by which to promote healthy diets and lifestyles across the population should be an important priority of public health policy."

The report, which polled more than 5,000 adults over a 20-year period, was published in the journal Archives Of Internal Medicine.

Copyright © Press Association 2010

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