A Healthier Life: First CDC Hispanic health report

Hispanic health reportThe CDC has released the first-ever National Study On Hispanic Health – which I’m almost 100% sure only coincidentally came out on Cinco de Mayo – and it was a long time coming. After all, about 57 million Hispanics currently live in the United States; that is, 1 in 6 people – which could become 1 in 4 by 2035. That makes Latinos the largest minority in the country. The study’s lead author Dr. Kenneth Dominguez and his colleagues burst open this massive piñata and found some treats as well as some tricks. For example, though Hispanics have a 24% lower mortality rate than whites, they are also 50% more likely to succumb to diabetes or liver disease.

Leading Causes of Death, Prevalence of Diseases and Risk Factors, and Use of Health Services Among Hispanics in the United States — 2009–2013 Findings



Hispanics have

35% less heart disease



than whites.

49% less cancer

24% more poorly controlled high blood pressure

23% more obesity

28% less colorectal screening


Hispanic subgroups


Mexicans and Puerto Ricans are approximately twice as likely to die from diabetes as whites.

Chronic liver disease and cirrhosis

Mexicans are almost twice as likely to die from chronic liver disease and cirrhosis as whites.


14% of Hispanics smoke as opposed to 24% of whites. However, 26% of Puerto Rican males and 22% of Cuban males smoke.

Colorectal cancer screening.

About 29% of Cuban men and 49% of Cuban women get screened.

About 54% of Puerto Rican men and 61% of Puerto Rican women get screened.

High blood pressure

Hispanics are as likely as whites to have high blood pressure, but Hispanic women with high blood pressure are twice as likely as Hispanic men to keep it under control.


Rage against the Machine





Chronic diseases




Heart disease






High blood pressure (HBP)



Poorly controlled HBP









Top 10 causes of death

  1. Heart disease.
  2. Cancer.
  3. Chronic lower respiratory diseases.
  4. Unintentional injuries.
  5. Stroke.
  6. Alzheimer’s disease.
  7. Diabetes.
  8. Influenza and pneumonia.
  9. Suicide.
  10. Kidney diseases.
  1. Cancer.
  2. Heart disease.
  3. Unintentional injuries.
  4. Stroke.
  5. Diabetes.
  6. Chronic liver disease and cirrhosis.
  7. Chronic lower respiratory diseases.
  8. Alzheimer’s disease.
  9. Influenza and pneumonia.
  10. Kidney diseases.


Born in the USA (or not)

Citizenship is not the only difference being born within the United States makes for Hispanics:


Hispanics born in the USA have

Approximately half as much heart disease as


Hispanics born in another country.

48% less cancer than

29% less high blood pressure

45% more high total cholesterol than


Additionally, cervical, stomach, and liver cancer are more common in foreign-born Hispanics.


Federal government

·         Help eligible Hispanics get covered under the Affordable Care Act.

·         Work to build capacity in communities to use community health workers.

·         Use existing programs to enhance community health services and preventive care access.

·         Make efforts to improve representation of all Hispanics in national health surveillance data and research.

Healthcare professionals

·         Work with healthcare interpreters to communicate with non-Anglophone patients.

·         Educate patients with or at risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, or cancer on weight control and diet.

·         Help patients who smoke quit.

·         Hook people up with free or low-cost services through community health workers.

Community health workers

·         Employ available resources to teach communities about health risks and prevention.

The public

·         If eligible, sign up for insurance coverage.

·         Talk to a healthcare provider about cancer screening.

·         Practice healthy lifestyle choices like quitting smoking, keeping a healthy weight, and exercising.

·         Learn about diabetes.

·         Eat fruits and vegetables.

·         Limit salt, total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol.


Related Read:

Porque es bueno ser un conejillo de Indias Americanas

¡A la Buena Salud! – To Good Health!