Lifted from comments by reader and contributor Run 75441 on Peak life expectancy:
We do wear out after a period of time. I suspect how quickly we wear out could be based upon life style, income, and diet. To answer your first statement, obesity in the is generation of children has led to an expected lowering of longevity in the US. This is the first time that one US generation will not out live the preceding generation. Diabetes is one of the fastest growing disorder plaguing the population of the US. Why???
Saletan at Slate had argued against the a law being passed in LA which had restricted the numbers of fast food restaurants in one section of the city. Never mind there was a fast food restaurant within walking distance for the residents of this particular section of LA or that there was one fast food restaurant for every 1300 residents. Cheaper, fattier, and less healthier foods are more readily available today and/or in lower income areas than ever before and this trend is growing overseas as well. The convenience of fast food impacts not only low income; but, it has also becomes a matter of convenience for high income as as well. Quality of food and the availability of quality food are issues.
We walk less and do less manual labor than our babyboomer predecessors. With the advent of suburbs outside of the cities and the two income families to make ends meet, we find ourselves driving more than we do taking busses, trains, or walking to work. People and industry moved out of the cities. The work level for many of us confines us to our desks for numerous hours. At the other end of the spectrum the lower incomes still face long and hard hours doing manual labor in order to meet the needs of a family. Income has stagnated for much of the population requiring a two earner income. The numbers of people within the Civilian Labor Force has decreased with the shift of emphasis from labor intensive investments to investments that are little more than gambling producing greater gains. Productivity gains have shifted away from labor to capital since the eighties.
The healthcare model is still services for fees which is heavily skewed towards specialties rather than preventative care. This has to be changed to a better
outcomes for fees with a heavy emphasis on preventative healthcare. While the ACA is not the shining beacon we could have had, it is a start in the right direction. The access to healthcare is still limited to those who have jobs and who also can afford it.
Briefly, all three of these factors are having an impact on the health of the population.