CDC Report on Life Expectancy—Latinos Live Longest. What Might This Tell Us About Medicine?

November 9, 2010
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MorgueA new government report reveals that even though Hispanic Americans have lower income and less health insurance, they live longer than non-Hispanic whites (the most medically insured group in the US).

There are a number of guesses as to why Latinos are living longer. One is that Hispanics who manage to immigrate to the US are among the healthiest from their countries. Tight-knit social communities and more physical activity could also play a role in life expectancy. Let’s consider another possibility.

The common perception is that income, education, and access to health insurance are the most important factors for longevity, but these recent findings turn that assumption upside down. In fact, the revelation that Latinos lack health insurance at a rate higher than other groups (they are two to three times as likely to be uninsured as the rest of the population) may be significant. Could the very avoidance of modern medicine be keeping US Latinos alive longer?

What is indisputable is that Western medicine is killing people prematurely. Statin drugs make us vulnerable to foodborne illnesses, and make us deficient in the vital nutrient vitamin D and COQ10. The latter deficiency can make us vulnerable to heart failure. Chemotherapy causes and hastens cancer deaths.

Medical errors are the number one killer in America, ahead of heart disease, cancer, and more. As Gary Null wrote in his book Death by Medicine, “The number of people who die each day because of medical errors—physician mistakes, hospital-related illness, and reactions to FDA-approved medications—is the equivalent of six jumbo jets falling out of the sky. More Americans are dying each year at the hands of medicine than all American casualties in WWI and the Civil War combined.”

Another possibility is diet. Traditional Latino diets, although far from perfect, are much better than the modern American diet with its reliance on sodas, junk food, and fast food. If this is a key factor, it ought to be possible to pinpoint by looking inside the data. But if it were just diet, why do Latinos suffer from some diseases at higher rates than non-Hispanic whites, including diabetes and heart disease, but die from these diseases at a lower, not a higher rate? That fact alone might suggest that the standard medical treatments available through health insurance are backfiring.

34 Responses to “CDC Report on Life Expectancy—Latinos Live Longest. What Might This Tell Us About Medicine?”

  1. Barb Brindza says:

    I hope the good health of the Latino community continues, but it is still to be seen whether a mainstay of their diet, GM corn, will impact them.


  2. Rich Aguilar says:

    Three things:
    Lots of chiles,Tequila & Cilantro


  3. I have never taken meds for anything and I am in perfect health. I would never trust the medical feild or most anything that they say!


  4. Lou says:

    Western medicine is killing people prematurely, Bingo!

    Traditional Latino diets, although far from perfect, are much better than the modern American diet, Bingo!

    So a simple protocol for health is

    1) Go to the doctor like a Latino (Little to NONE)

    If you do go throw away any “prescription” you may be given. NEVER under any circumstances get “screened” for ANYTHING. NEVER under any circumstances get “vaccinated” for anything unless you are bitten by a rabid doctor et al. At all costs keep your precious children away from peds and peds.

    2) Eat like a Latino. Real food raw if possible.

    3) Take vitamin D3, 1000 IU/20 pounds of body weight/day


  5. LeRoy says:

    I am a latino male 77 years old. I found that an interesting article.

    I don’t look for trouble by going to doctors for physicals. I mute the TV whenever an ad for the ‘latest , greatest’ new wonder drug comes on. People are gullible and vulnerable and the drug companies know it.

    I never worked any job where they offered health insurance and never worried about not having it and we raised five kids.

    A couple of us guys backpack into the Ruby Mountains in Nevada with 50#
    backpacks to the 10,000 foot level and camp there.Then we hunt up to or a little above the 11K elevation. At those elevations and very difficult terrain you
    are very careful. My lungs have never given me any problems even though I was exposed to asbestos and many other finely divided powders in my working days.

    I’ve had cataracts and gall bladder removed and hernias fixed. I was required to take some medications at those times. The doctor commented that most patients he had had a list of medications they took as long as his arm. The nurses are fun to watch as they get this incredulous look on their face when they look at the paperwork and can’t believe ‘no medications’.
    The anesthesiologist said “you sure make my job a lot easier by not taking medications”.

    All in all I feel good every day. I do the cooking around here and don’t use much in the way of processed foods. I grind whole wheat and blue corn for baking bread and making tortillas. I roast a bushel of green chile every year and I use quite a bit of red chile also. I don’t drink milk and only use a little for cooking.

    Sorry for the long winded dissertation. I got carried away.


  6. Bethy says:

    I started on one pill for high blood pressure. Then another of the same pill was added, since my blood pressure keep going up. I am also a diabetic and was taking two different pills twice daily for that. I started a low carb diet this Sept ember and was able to cut one blood pressure pill out and one diabetic pill out am and half of one in the pm. I then added an anti- fungal diet to that and now am taking only half a blood pressue pill. My sugar was 98 this morning. I hope to keep losing weight. I have lost 10 pounds so far and have about twenty to go. I am feeling better than I have in a long time. I take supplements. You need to starve the fungui. My Doctor sould not do a blood test to see about the fungus.He acted like i did not know what i was taking about. Bless him he wasn’ taught about this in school.


  7. I strongly suspect that many doctors or health agencies are well paid to push pharmaceuticals. Has anyone noticed how those that promote natural medicine over pharmaceuticals are not recognized by insurance companies? I think they are not on the pay off list! The world is waking but much damage is done. Crimes against humanity by any corporation should be punishable by law to the fullest extent. Get these laws past and gather them up for trial and punishment and the world will clean up quickly. Their pockets are well padded but a noose is not!


  8. Karen says:

    I once worked at a local hospital on the heart floor as a unit secretary. One day a doctor who was called from out of town came to my desk to give me instructions for his patient. He leaned over and whispered in my ear these words…”IF YOU WANT TO LIVE AND LONG AND HEALTHY LIFE, STAY AWAY FROM DOCTORS”.


    • Isernia says:

      I LOVE IT!!!! I definitely LOVE IT!!!! It only confirms what I heard about thirty years ago, and since then I moved away from hospitals, practitioners, specialists, operations, doctors offices, etc………… why? because my inner voice was telling me that it couldn’t be ‘natural’ to do all those things…… In 1980, when my last child was born, I decided to breast-feed him, ( I had breast-fed my first child -which by the way was born in Argentina, of which I am a native) to the surprise of doctors, nurses and all the other mothers around me, as it was then the custom to bottle- feed the baby plastic formula —- yes, I guess that we people from other countries still believe in the old customs, and NO MOTHER was going to feed her baby artificial food…..yes, I’m white Argentinian with no health insurance by choice, in wonderful health, active, sleep like a baby, no wrinkles, eat mostly raw-vegetarian food, take good quality supplements and have not taken any medicines (drugs) in ages…… Nature has provided all we need to stay healthy: wonderful vegetables and fruits, nuts, seeds, roots, teas, oils, herbs, flowers, juices, WATER! salves, and the miracle of homeopathy! What do I need doctors for?


  9. CJ says:

    I control my blood pressure with nutritional supplements. Stays around 110/70 and that’s with CHF. Also exercise and watch the carbs.


  10. Ruth A. Yacko says:

    Amen! You just said it all. You got out of the medicalization/ Good for you!


  11. I always enjoy your very informative pieces but In this article there seems to be a confusion about Latinos.
    Hispanic or Latino is NOT A RACE – anymore than being French is a race. It is ETHNICITY and a very complex one too. Some Latinos are part Indian (Mexico, Peru, Bolivia) and in those same countries there are many that are Caucasiian exclusively. And depending on the country the degerre of education and therefore the percentage of poverty and propensity to disease. I know for a fact that Hispanics from Cuba and Argentina are prosperous and do not lack health insurance as other hispanics might do. Each country has its own priorities and nd to lump them together as simply non- Caucasian onlly confuses people. HIspanics from Spain are Caucasian,as are from many South and Central American countries They are also Hispanic.
    The two are not mutually exclusive. Please get it right.


    • ANH-USA says:

      Thank you and others for the correction we received about this terminology. In the study we cited, the authors referred to non-Hispanic whites and non-Hispanic blacks as simply “whites” and “blacks”, and our article reflected the author’s terminology. We’ve updated our article now to reflect more accurate terminology.


  12. Robert says:

    My grandparents die in their 90s. My parents are in their 80s, though not healthy. Neither of them ate healthy, except my mother knew how to cook. Meat was always, always supplemented with vegetables, raw, cooked, and all kinds of vegetables. However, despite all that, they both consumed a high sugar & carb diet. However, one thing was certain of in our latin community. Some latin folks do have an aversion to DRUGS: excessive prescriptions. And some, don’t take them regularly. I’ve never understood why they outlasted two of my brothers. Their limited exposure to toxic chemicals in their home country (growing up), may also have attributed to their longevity. However, there is something to be said for a tight social network (they both have many supportive friends) – psychologically healthy.


  13. Joe Mac Bates Jr says:

    Additionally, and “unreported publicly,” the Medical Church simply out of the blue “decided” to lower the Blood Pressure High Point in order to declare you have “HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE.” Ask your Doctor when this took place and watch them “squirm” as they explain who did it and why it is Scientifically the right Thing To Do. They do not have a clue about the facts of a Healthy Life without DRUGS.
    Joe Mac Bates, Jr. Irmo, S.C.


  14. hogie says:

    no surprise to me. stay away from doctors and you will live longer.


  15. Bill says:

    My BP was 167/ 93 to 98, I started taking the new form of CQ10 Ubiquinol.And I lost a few pounds.Now my BP is 122/79,Not bad for a 62 year old man.So give it a try and see what happens.It can’t hurt you and who knows,it might do you a world of good. PS. I take NO MED OF ANY KIND,WHAT SO EVER.And I try to walk two to three miles a week.May God Bless Y ou with a Long and Happy Life. ( Mild Bill ) sousteast conner of texas.


  16. A Wells says:

    HA! I had a silimiar experience with pregnancy induced high blood pressure in the third trimester with my 2nd child. Fortunately for me, the medical assistant would say “I’m going to let you calm down, and try again in 5 minutes”, and sure enough it would drop down into the normal range. The odd part is that with my last 2 pregnancies I had such low blood pressure, my midwife (I switched) would tell me to talk through the blood pressure test so she could get a reading!

    On another note, my Dad had high blood pressure for years (never took meds for it), but switched from table salt to sea salt and hasn’t had a prblem with high blood pressure for many years. Apparently Americans only comsume 7% of the salt processed each year, 93% of the salt used in this country is for things like laundry soap, but all of the salt is heated to 2000 degrees celcius to remove impurities. This process changes the molecular bond of the salt and makes it toxic to the body. In about 30% of the population, it will show up as high blood pressure. Also most people consume too much sodium (processed foods) and not enough potassium. The ratio should be 3:1 potassium to sodium, for most people it is backwards at 2:1 sodium to potassium. Foods high in potassium include swiss chard, spinach, winter squash, crimini mushrooms, potato skins, bananas, dates, broccoli, collard greens, cantalope, beets, and brussel sprouts.

    Anyway great article! Thanks for bringing it to others attention. I’m going to check out that Gary Null book now.


  17. Joy says:

    I also know well about the Western medicine – having two reaccurances with colon cancer, I am now seeing Drs in Mexico because they don’t believe in the extreme methods of killing patients with chemo, radiation, or the drugs. They believe in working with the body to combat & control the disease very naturally – by building the body up – from the inside out.


  18. Chris Daub says:

    My mother had high BP, and her Dr had her on BP meds and a water pill. She had a stroke one Friday night while my sister was visiting, and when the Drs in Emergency checked her, they found the bottom of her Heart was not functioning. She immediately had a temporary pacemaker put in, then on that Sunday morning, they installed a permanent one. Her family DR Never gave her an EKG, just put her on Meds. He never knew her Heart wasn’t functioning.


  19. Ogre says:

    ROFL… You certainly must realize that the reason the drug companies have made some of their wares available “if you can’t afford them” is because the last thing they wanted was a database that indicated folks might be better off without them. The statisticians found a way around this and the results should have been predictable. Now they should look for a common thread.


  20. Darlene Hansen says:

    I totally agree with what has been stated in the Reply’s letter. I know that my mom was diagnosed with High Blood Pressure when she was in her 50s. She went to the doctor and they gave her a prescription to supposidly help with her condition but as she read the information on the medicine she decided that she did not like what it was saying and she contacted her sister in Europe and found out what they were using in her little town in Slovania which was totally natural and consisted of Milk, Garlic and a natural strong Alcohol product. I wish I had paid more attention to how she created this combination BUT it totally reduced her blood pressure and she never had to be on medicine again for that issue. I am amazed at stories I have been told about the mid-wives, etc. in the small towns of Europe and how they saved children and adults from health issues without using prescribed drugs.


  21. Milt-3 says:

    This is not a surprise I have high blood pressure my Doc put me on 2 blood pressure meds instantly.
    There was no attempt to lower my blood pressure without drugs. He then stated me on a third med for blood pressure 6 mo’s later. I started to monitor my own blood pressure and chart it. I found my blood pressure was to low 99 over 50 during part of the day. I also found my blood pressure would spike when I saw my Doc. I have since took myself off one med completely, and started daily walks and plan on reducing my other meds.

    My conclusion is do not trust your Doctor He She is too busy to help keep you healthy.


    • Ogre says:

      My practitioners are lackeys with specific skills. I respect these skill and am grateful for them. The minute they go outside their area of expertise and recommend dumb s(tuff) they are gone.


      • Salledell says:

        Did anyone consider the Hispanic diet? I shop at a market frequented mainly by Hispanics. The produce there is excellent and I notice many people buying lots of it. There are loads of peppers of different kinds and gondolas full of tortillas as well as bins of bulk beans. All these foods are what we are told we should eat more of. I have celiac disease so I cannot eat the traditional American wheat-based diet. The corn tortillas provide whole grain and fiber, while the peppers, tomatoes and other fruits and vegetables provide well-balanced vitamins and minerals. My Mexican handyman tells me that in Mexico the whole family shares a piece of meat in the form of stew, chili verde or as filling for tacos or tamales.


    • Marcla says:

      And remember, a doctor makes no money off healthy people! I have not trusted doctors for over 10 years now, going thru early menuapause, the doctor I finally found who listened to me and finally tested my hormone levels then demanded I take hormone replacements. I said no, he told me to find another doctor then….I haven’t been to a doctor since and turned to natural medicine.


    • ED says:

      This is the problem, DRUGS, DRUGS, and more DRUGS. There are many natural holistic solutions to reversing and preventing diseases we just have to take the time and gain knowledge and educate ourselves to DRUG alternatives and so called “Miracle of Medicine”. “Let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food” Hippocrates, rememebr?

      Good conclusion, do not follow everything your Doctor says or prescribes they have very little nutritional training and are part of the FDA, Pharmaceutical , Medical community that promotes drug thereapy over nutritional therapy.

      Why do we eat?? sounds like a stupid question, But the reason we have to eat is our body requires and needs nutrients, duhhh! But people frown on eating high quality nutritious foods, hence; DISEASE. Stay away from processed foods, eat organics, take high qulity supplements.
      Nuff said


    • leesa says:

      More fool you for listening to him. Why do even informed people accept the alleged authority of allopathic doctors.


    • T says:

      Milt, look into taking some quality fish oils and vitamin d3. I took myself off my BP meds a year ago, and I’m doing well. I’ve made a lot of changes, but the fish oil really helped. I was diagnosed with hypertension at 29, if it was up to my dr, I’d just take the meds for the rest of my life.


    • diana brendan says:

      Try juicing. I had high blood pressure and bought an Omega 8006 juicer. My blood pressure dropped to 110 over 70. I juiced dark leafy greens like kale, parsley, cilantro, carrots, red beets, oranges, apples, strawberries, ginger, garlic. Much better remedy than drugs.


    • Lou says:

      “Do not trust your Doctor He She is too busy to help keep you healthy.”

      Well if we cut the docs some slack we still get the same answer.

      Your doctor spends about five or less minutes with the average patient. For this his office will bill you 50 to 100 bucks; that is 1000 to 2000 and hour. Hey I would work for that.

      MOST of the time your doc spends with you is instructing you on how to be a good “patient” and take your medicine. Now can he possibly dig into your problem.

      For 50 to 100 bucks plus the money extracted from you by big pharma you can do some research on the net; YOU can come up with some good ideas on how to solve your problem WITHOUT drugs.

      MANY serious health problems such as CVD, cancer, sugar diabetes et al and MANY minor health problems are at base life style problems and ALL can be prevented and many solved by living well. It may take a little time to learn to live in today’s USSA where governments, the “medical profession” and others make it so hard but I can be done in less than one year. This health knowledge will seve you and your family well for many decades and will often result in your NEVER crossing a doctors door often for many decades.


    • Gerald Burge says:

      Almost every Doc I have seen in the last rwenty years has almost instantly pulled out the prescribtion pad and started wrting. When I complian I have been asked if I was a Doc. Sometimes I wonder what they learn in Med Cschool. To write scriptsw all the time or to truly find out what is wrong and help heal the parient as naturally as possible.


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