As expected on the basis of statistics reviewed thus far, there is increased mortality for African Americans compared to Whites. Increased mortality co-occurs with the increased prevalence of chronic conditions and disability. For example, as noted previously, the five-year survival rate for cancer is much lower for African Americans than Whites.
African Americans have excess death because of seven conditions. Excess deaths are defined as the number of deaths among minorities that would not have occurred had mortality rates for minorities equaled that of nonminorities. These conditions are (1) heart disease and stroke; (2) homicide and accidents; (3) cancer; (4) infant mortality; (5) cirrhosis; (6) diabetes; and (7) AIDS (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,
What is common to all of the above conditions is that they are sometimes linked to behavioral or lifestyle factors. Excess death could be reduced if behavioral changes were made. The intent in this chapter is to highlight these differences so that the discrepancies can begin to be addressed.
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All you need is a proper diet of fresh fruits and vegetables and get plenty of exercise and you'll be fine. Ever heard those words from your doctor? If that's all heshe recommends then you're missing out an important ingredient for health that he's not telling you. Fact is that you can adhere to the strictest diet, watch everything you eat and get the exercise of amarathon runner and still come down with diabetic complications. Diet, exercise and standard drug treatments simply aren't enough to help keep your diabetes under control.