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New estimate of more than three million diabetes-related deaths every year

May 02, 2017

Garcia cited figures showing that overweight prevalence is high in many Latin American countries, where recreational physical activity is often limited to people with high incomes, partially because urban environments often are not conducive to safe exercise and activity, especially for women.

Nutrition is a key factor and is often getting worse in many countries, he said, as people eat more energy-rich and fatty foods, sugared drinks, and less fruits and vegetables. In Brazil, for example, fruit consumption fell 80 percent from 1962 to 1988, while consumption of vegetable oils rose 100 percent, Garcia said.

To be effective, health interventions must take place in schools, worksites, health centers, and homes, he said, and improving the environment is a key to changing behavior.

The two-day health summit is part of the Healthier U.S. initiative launched by President George W. Bush, Thompson said, to ???help Americans live longer, better and healthier lives.

PAHO was established in 1902 and is the world??s oldest public health organization. PAHO works with all the countries of the Americas to improve the health and the quality of life of people of the Americas, and serves as the Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization (WHO).