The health of Baby Boomers is going—bust! Show Notes

Wednesday, February 13, 2013 Host(s): Dr. Bill Maier
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Were you born between 1946 and 1964? If so, how are you feeling? According to a story on HealthDay.com, the baby boom is turning out to be a health bust.

Medical advances have led to the longest life expectancy ever, but baby boomers have higher rates of chronic disease, more disability and lower self-rated health than their parents did at a comparable age.

Baby boomers, have embraced activities such as running, fitness classes and backpacking in unprecedented numbers.

In spite of that, they have increasing rates of diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity. 

Dr. Dana King at West Virginia University School of Medicine says "There seems to be somewhat of a disconnect between the reputation of baby boomers for being healthy and what we see. It's really discouraging that they're not the healthiest generation."

Dr. King compared the health of men and women between the ages of 46 to 64 to the health of people in their parents’ generation.   While 32 percent of their parents' generation described their health as "excellent" during middle age, only about 13 percent of baby boomers felt that way.

Obesity was more common among baby boomers than their parents.  In addition, 52 percent of boomers said they had no regular physical activity, while only 17 percent in their parents' generation reported being couch potatoes.

Dr. King said it's still not too late for baby boomers to get healthier. He said his previous research showed that it is possible to "turn back the clock" even if you’re in your 50s or 60s.

I’m Bill Maier for WBCL.

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