From Iceland — Icelanders Neither Healthy Nor Unhealthy, Study Finds

Icelanders Neither Healthy Nor Unhealthy, Study Finds

Published December 2, 2009

A sociology professor at the University of Iceland tells reporters about the results of a wide-ranging poll he conducted of Icelanders over the span of two years.
Rúnar Vilhjálmsson told Vísir, among other things, that some of the results of a study he conducted from 2006 and 2007 show that educated people are more likely to live a healthy lifestyle than those who are poorly educated. Women, in general, were healthier than men. In addition, income apparently also matters, as those who earned more money were generally healthier than those with lower-set incomes.
Based on a study conducted in the United States in the 80s, Vilhjálmsson’s study polled Icelanders on a variety of “lifestyle questions” – how long they sleep at night, if they eat breakfast, if they snack, if they exercise regularly and so forth.
The general result is that while Icelanders engage in numerous unhealthy behaviors, they engage in many healthy ones as well. Overall, the lifestyle of the average Icelander is neither very healthy nor very unhealthy.
Vilhjálmsson concludes that while Iceland’s general health is good, studies have shown that economic difficulties can result in unhealthier habits, and that therefore it is important for health care authorities to encourage Icelanders to maintain their healthy habits.

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