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Study shows baby boomers in worse health than their parents

Posted on 3/4/2013

HSC 2020 Strategic Plan Priority: Contribute to the health of West Virginians through leading edge research programs that distinguish WVU HSC

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Despite having a reputation of being the healthiest and most active generation, baby boomers are actually in worse overall health than their parents, according to a new study by researchers at the West Virginia University School of Medicine.

Dana King, M.D., chair of the WVU Department of Family Medicine and lead author on the study, said he and his team were somewhat surprised to find that boomers weren’t as healthy as previously believed. In fact, baby boomers have higher levels of hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol and higher rates of disability than their parents.

To conduct the study, King and his team analyzed data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination survey (NHANES), including NHANES III (1988-1994) and the NHANES for 2007-2010, focusing on respondents who were 46-64 years old during either period. The two cohorts were compared in regard to health status, functional and work disability, healthy lifestyle characteristics, and presence of chronic disease.

Read full press release here.