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Science. 2012 Sep 21;337(6101):1482-7.

Can noncommunicable diseases be prevented? Lessons from studies of populations and individuals.

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  • 1MRC-HPA, Centre for Environment and Health and Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Imperial College London, London W2 1PG, UK.


Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs)--mainly cancers, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and chronic respiratory diseases--are responsible for about two-thirds of deaths worldwide, mostly in low- and middle-income countries. There is an urgent need for policies and strategies that prevent NCDs by reducing their major risk factors. Effective approaches for large-scale NCD prevention include comprehensive tobacco and alcohol control through taxes and regulation of sales and advertising; reducing dietary salt, unhealthy fats, and sugars through regulation and well-designed public education; increasing the consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy fats, and whole grains by lowering prices and improving availability; and implementing a universal, effective, and equitable primary-care system that reduces NCD risk factors, including cardiometabolic risk factors and infections that are precursors to NCDs, through clinical interventions.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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