Explore the Data

Health > Health Risk Factors

Health Risk Factors

Adult chronic health factors are better than the U.S. as a whole
Of the ten leading causes of death in the United States, seven are chronic diseases,1 and almost half of all Americans live with at least one chronic illness.2 Underlying many chronic health conditions are risk factors such as tobacco use and exposure, physical inactivity, and poor nutrition. Engaging in healthy behaviors greatly reduces the risk for illness and death due to chronic diseases.

  • Lancaster County’s obesity rate has increased 30% since 2005, a greater increase than the U.S. increase (27%).
  • Since 2007, Lancaster County’s obesity rate3 had been lower than the national rate, but in 2018 mirrors the national rate.
  • Lancaster County’s diabetes rate4 has fluctuated, and has generally been lower than the national rate.
  • The physical inactivity5 rate in the Lancaster and Seward counties has been lower than the national rate in the past several years.
Footnotes

1. Kochanek, K. D., Murphy, S. L., Xu, J., & Tejada-Vera, B. (June 30, 2016). Deaths: Final data for 2014. National Vital Statistics Reports, 65(4), 1-121. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics.

2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (Updated October 25, 2013). Preventing chronic diseases and reducing health risk factors. Retrieved May 11, 2017 from: https://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dch/programs/healthycommunitiesprogram/overview/diseasesandrisks.htm

3. Obesity is defined as having a Body Mass Index of 30 to 99.8 and is calculated based on responses to questions about height and weight. Lancaster County data comes from Lincoln-Lancaster Health Department and is from a geographic over-sample of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention national sample for the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (BRFSS). Over-sampled data is weighted in the same manner as the national data. National data come from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention national sample.

4. Diabetes rates are based on individual reports that they have been diagnosed with diabetes. Lancaster County data comes from Lincoln-Lancaster Health Department and is from a geographic over-sample of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention national sample for the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (BRFSS). Over-sampled data is weighted in the same manner as the national data. National data come from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention national sample.

5. Physical inactivity is based on persons responding no to the question: During the past month, other than your regular job, did you participate in any physical activities or exercises such as running, calisthenics, golf, gardening, or walking for exercise? Lancaster County and national data are from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (BRFSS). Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department does not over-sample this question.