Lifestyle choices by residents of the United States are a main contributor to lower life expectancy than the advanced democracies. People living in the Unied States are more likely to be obese and die of heart disease than residents of the advanced democracies.


GreenRanked first for statistic
RedRanked last for statistic
Obesity %% Alcohol Attributed Traffic DeathsHeart Disease Mortality RateTraffic Fatalities/ 1,000,000Drink and Drive Rate (%)Firearm Fatalities/ 100,000
United Kingdom25.913.083.82.3911.60.17
United States33.531.0116.712.9312.09


Obesity Percent: OECD

Percent obesity of the total population, self-reported. From 2021 except for Australia (2017), Canada, France, Japan (2019), Norway (2022).
Non-medical Determinants of Health > Body Weight
**countries with measured data (not self-reported) are denoted with an asterisk

Alcohol-Related Traffic Deaths: OECD International Transport Forum

Alcohol-Related Road Casualties in Official Crash Statistics, 2017.
Percent road traffic deaths involving alcohol, for 2010. All countries use a legal limit of 0.5 g/L except for Norway, Sweden, Japan (under 0.5 g/L) and Canada, United Kingdom, United States (0.8 g/L).

Heart Disease Mortality Rates: OECD

Ischemic heart disease (coronary heart disease), deaths per 100,000 (standardized rates).
All data from 2020 except for Canada (2019), Sweden (2018), France, Italy (2017), Norway (2016).

Traffic Fatalities per 1,000,000: OECD

Road accident deaths per million inhabitants, 2021.

Drink and Drive Rate: European Transport Safety Council

Drink Driving: Towards Zero Tolerance, 2012. Percentage of those tested found to be above the legal BAC limit

Fire-arm related death rate:

Annual rate of all gun deaths per 100,000 population. All data from 2019 except for France, Norway, United Kingdom (2016), Italy (2017), Canada (2018).


“How Japan Won Its ‘Traffic War'” David Zipper

September 6, 2022.

“Until the early 1970s, Japan endured a high rate of road fatalities. Now the nation boasts one of the world’s best traffic safety records.”

“No level of alcohol consumption is safe for our health” World Health Organization

January 4, 2023.

“The World Health Organization has now published a statement in The Lancet Public Health: when it comes to alcohol consumption, there is no safe amount that does not affect health…. Globally, the WHO European Region has the highest alcohol consumption level and the highest proportion of drinkers in the population.”

Page updated on 8/25/2023.