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The Rise of “Lifestyle” Diseases in Developing Countries

June 2018

Although life expectancy and living standards are improving, developing countries also experience a rapid rise in health problems such as diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure and raised cholesterol levels. Caused mainly by dietary changes and a lack of physical activity, these “lifestyle” diseases pose significant challenges to consumers, businesses and governments, while driving new lifestyle trends and creating new market opportunities for many industries.

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Lifestyle diseases: A growing problem in developing markets

“Lifestyle” diseases refer to health problems such as diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure and raised cholesterol levels.

Diabetes prevalence soars even in low-income countries

The rate of diabetes prevalence for emerging and developing countries has been increasing and has already surpassed the rate in developed nations as a whole.

Alarming rise in obesity rates

More than two-thirds of the world’s obese population now lives in developing and emerging countries, while the trend is rising amidst higher consumption of convenience food and sugary drinks, and insufficient physical activity

High blood pressure is more common than in developed countries

High blood pressure is becoming more prevalent in developing countries than in developed nations, as consumers in high-income countries already actively implement prevention measures such as reducing their intake of salt and fat and pursuing healthier lifestyles.

Cholesterol levels increase fast due to dietary changes

The rate of raised cholesterol prevalence in emerging and developing economies is now catching up with that in developed countries, as dietary habits, particularly in developing cities, are turning towards higher consumption of meat, fast food and soft drinks.

Lifestyle diseases: A growing problem in developing markets
Diabetes prevalence soars even in low-income countries
Alarming rise in obesity rates
High blood pressure is more common than in developed countries
Cholesterol levels increase fast due to dietary changes
Consumer and government responses to lifestyles diseases
Key opportunities and challenges for businesses
Xiaomi : Affordable fitness tracker for health management
Nestlé: Calorie reduction by changing sugar structure
Philips air fryer: Cooking with less fat
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