bad-lifestyle-diseases-lead-to-critical-illness

Modern lifestyles are often blamed for the prevalence of chronic diseases such as obesity and type II diabetes. Lifestyle choices undoubtedly impact our health significantly as non-communicable diseases(NCDs) – also known as chronic diseases or lifestyle-related diseases (LRDs) – are generally caused by lifestyle(controllable) or genetic (not controllable) factors. According to WHO, 41 million people die from a NCD each year, equivalent to 71% of total global deaths.

Lifestyle diseases are conditions primarily based on our daily habits. Unhealthy habits that push people towards a sedentary routine gives way to many health issues that can lead to fatal non-communicable diseases. Some common lifestyle diseases include:

Many chronic diseases share common lifestyle risk factors such as: 


These risk factors can be reduced by switching to a healthy lifestyle.

As a matter of fact, some lifestyle diseases are deadly yet preventable. For example, cardiovascular diseases(CVD) accounted for about one in every five registered deaths in 2017 in Hong Kong. It is estimated that among every 1 000 persons aged 30–74, 106 persons may suffer from CVD events over the next 10 years. But 80% of cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke, are preventable. Healthy behavior change can save lives.

Consider the following principles for a healthier lifestyle.

  1. Healthy diet
    Start by avoiding refined and processed foods. Plant-based diet also helps reduce diabetes, heart disease and cancer risk. Mediterranean diet, rich in vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts and fish, can reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and other chronic diseases.
  2. Stay active
    Regular exercise improves your overall health and fitness. Experts recommend 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity, or 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity each week.
  3. Sleep well
    Quality sleep is sometimes elusive thanks to the busy modern lifestyle. Adults are recommended to sleep at least 7 hours per day. Try having consistent bedtime and wake time, even on the weekends. Regular physical activity can also promote better sleep.
  4. Stress relief
    Chronic stress is the enemy of your immune system. Practise mindfulness, meditation and gratitude to de-stress and achieve wellbeing.
  5. Social life
    Stay connected with friends and families keep you emotionally and physically healthy.

Taking action is the most important step towards success. However, lifestyle change doesn’t happen overnight. Make regular small steps. Change one habit at a time and make it last. You can do it!


Cigna’s Worry Free Protection Plan is your choice to manage lifestyle disease. The plan covers 100 critical illnesses, including cancer, stroke, heart disease, kidney failure and major organ transplant. The plan offers one-off payment up to 100% of the Sum Insured if the Person Insured is diagnosed with a covered critical illness. With such a holistic protection plan, you can be rest assured to focus on your recovery. Learn more here.

Sources:

  1. 5 Healthy Habits That Prevent Chronic Disease – Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic
  2. Lifestyle Diseases: Consequences, Characteristics, Causes and Control
  3. How lifestyle choices affect our health (fact sheet; Australia’s health 2016) (AIHW)
  4. https://www.healthline.com/health/top-10-deadliest-diseases#diarrhea
  5. Lifestyle Diseases
  6. Life & Critical Illness Insurance: Cigna HealthSecure Protection Booster
  7. https://www.chp.gov.hk/files/pdf/ncd_watch_sep_2018.pdf

Lifestyle diseases are conditions primarily based on our daily habits. Unhealthy habits that push people towards a sedentary routine gives way to many health issues that can lead to fatal non-communicable diseases. Some common lifestyle diseases include:

Many chronic diseases share common lifestyle risk factors such as: 

These risk factors can be reduced by switching to a healthy lifestyle.

As a matter of fact, some lifestyle diseases are deadly yet preventable. For example, cardiovascular diseases(CVD) accounted for about one in every five registered deaths in 2017 in Hong Kong. It is estimated that among every 1 000 persons aged 30–74, 106 persons may suffer from CVD events over the next 10 years. But 80% of cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke, are preventable. Healthy behavior change can save lives.

Consider the following principles for a healthier lifestyle.

  1. Diet
    Start by avoiding refined and processed foods. Plant-based diet also helps reduce diabetes, heart disease and cancer risk.

    Mediterranean diet, rich in vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts and fish, can reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and other chronic diseases.

  2. Stay active
    Regular exercise improves your overall health and fitness. Experts recommend 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity, or 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity each week.
  3. Sleep well
    Quality sleep is sometimes elusive thanks to the busy modern lifestyle. Adults are recommended to sleep at least 7 hours per day. Try having consistent bedtime and wake time, even on the weekends. Regular physical activity can also promote better sleep.
  4. Stress relief
    Chronic stress is the enemy of your immune system. Practise mindfulness, meditation and gratitude to de-stress and achieve wellbeing.
  5. Social life
    Stay connected with friends and families keep you emotionally and physically healthy.

Taking action is the most important step towards success. However, lifestyle change doesn’t happen overnight. Make regular small steps. Change one habit at a time and make it last. You can do it!


Cigna’s Worry Free Protection Plan is your choice to manage lifestyle disease. The plan covers 61 critical illnesses, including cancer, stroke, heart disease, kidney failure and major organ transplant. The plan offers one-off payment up to 100% of the Sum Insured if the Person Insured is diagnosed with a covered critical illness. With such a holistic protection plan, you can be rest assured to focus on your recovery. Learn more here.

Sources:

  1. 5 Healthy Habits That Prevent Chronic Disease – Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic
  2. Lifestyle Diseases: Consequences, Characteristics, Causes and Control
  3. How lifestyle choices affect our health (fact sheet; Australia’s health 2016) (AIHW)
  4. https://www.healthline.com/health/top-10-deadliest-diseases#diarrhea
  5. Lifestyle Diseases
  6. Life & Critical Illness Insurance: Cigna HealthSecure Protection Booster
  7. https://www.chp.gov.hk/files/pdf/ncd_watch_sep_2018.pdf

© Cigna 2019

Information provided in this article is intended for health and fitness purposes only and is not intended for use in the diagnosis of disease or other conditions, or in the cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of disease (see Terms & Conditions for details). Any health-related information found in this article is available only for your interest and should not be treated as medical advice. Users should seek any medical advice from a physician, especially before self-diagnosing any ailment or embarking on any new lifestyle or exercise regime. Any information contained in this article may not be suitable, accurate, complete or reliable. Cigna accepts no responsibility for the content or accuracy of information contained on external websites or resources, or for the security and safety of using them. “Cigna” and the “Tree of Life” logo are registered trademarks of Cigna Intellectual Property, Inc. in the United States and elsewhere, licensed for use. All products and services are provided by or through operating subsidiaries, and not by Cigna Corporation.

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