The average life span of Indians is shorter than that of Chinese and Americans, according to the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010.
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The study, published in British Medical Journal 'The Lancet', revealed that the life expectancy (LE) of Indians had elevated over the past 40 years but is still far behind the LE of Chinese and Americans.
It stated that the LE at birth of an average Indian male increased by 15 years between 1970 and 2010, but it was 10 years less compared to an average Chinese male and about 13 years less than that of an American. Also, the LE of an average Indian woman rose by 18 years over the past four decades, but was short of 11.5 years in comparison to an average Chinese woman.
As per the report, the life span of an average Indian male is estimated to be 63 years while that of a woman is 67.5 years. It also stated that the last nine years of men and 10.4 years of women were severely worn down by poor health and various other ailments.
The report revealed high blood pressure as the foremost threat to the world population. But in India, indoor air pollution (IAP) was attributed as the chief cause of health problems, especially for the rural population which relies on wood, coal and animal dung as fuel for preparing meals.
The inhalation of carbon monoxide, benzene and formaldehyde due to burning of these materials cause diseases like pneumonia, asthma, blindness, lung cancer, tuberculosis and led to low-birth weight in newborns.
The study also revealed that other factors that contributed to poor health in India included inappropriate diet, anaemia, lack of physical exercise and occupational hazards.
Another major cause for ailment and death in India was assumed to be tobacco smoking. According to study, the statistics showed that about 6.3 million people around the world died due to smoking.
Reportedly, a majority of Indians are also prone to depressive disorders, iron deficiency anemia and neck pain and lower back pain, which served as basis for the number of years lived with disability (YLD).
The study involved 486 researchers in 50 countries including India and was carried out over a period of five years.