Health report: In Bavaria you live healthy

Health report Bavaria

People live healthy in Bavaria: Bavaria presents its first health report

(10.11.2010) The Bavarian Minister of Health Markus Söder (CSU) is satisfied with the new health report: People smoke less, exercise more and also have a significantly higher life expectancy. However, there are also negative things to report: Alcohol consumption and obesity among adolescents has increased significantly.

Life is better and healthier in Bavaria In Bavaria you live healthy, at least in view of the positive numbers in the newly presented health report, no other decision could be made. But there are also alarming trends that should be taken seriously. On the one hand, a steady increase in alcohol consumption among adolescents was observed. Secondly, people are getting fatter and overweight. An increase in mental illnesses can also be observed. Because the growing stress in professional life does not stop at the state of Bavaria. On Wednesday, the Bavarian CSU Minister of Health Markus Söder was very satisfied when he presented the first health report for Bavaria. The minister already exulted, as it is the peculiar nature of a minister from Bavaria: "In Bavaria, people live better and healthier than in the rest of Germany."

More and more young people are overweight and drink more alcohol
However, negative health figures can also be reported in the land of beer and white sausage. Although the proportion of young people who smoke cigarettes continues to decline, excessive consumption of alcohol and significant obesity develop into an increasing social health problem.

18.5 percent of young people in Bavaria report drinking five or more alcoholic drinks in a row at least once in the past 30 days. Nationwide, this risky form of alcohol consumption, which doctors also call "binge drinking", is somewhat more common at 20.4 percent. Young people themselves speak of “coma booze” or “fighting drinking” when large amounts of alcohol are consumed within a short period of time. This drinking behavior is particularly risky in terms of health, since it can quickly lead to alcohol poisoning.

Significant increases in acute alcohol poisoning The number of young people under the age of 18 who had to be treated for acute alcohol poisoning in the hospital has increased dramatically within a few years: in 2008 there were a total of 5 005 children, adolescents and young adults under 20 in Bavaria Years, all over Germany 25 509. Particularly worrying: around 4,500 of them nationwide were only between 10 and 15 years old and thus in an age group to whom the supply of alcohol is generally prohibited. In Bavaria, just over 800 adolescents belong to this young group. The organism of children and adolescents is particularly susceptible to damage from alcohol. And the earlier you start consuming alcoholic beverages, the higher the risk that addiction will develop later.

On the one hand, it can be observed that the frequency of severe overweight (obesity) among 12- to 25-year-olds in Bavaria has almost doubled within ten years, from 2.1 percent (1995) to 4.0 percent (2005) Trend that probably exists in Germany as a whole. The reason for this increase is probably less exercise, but more fat and unhealthy food. "These are key issues for the future," said Health Minister Söder.

Bayern live longest But there are also numerous positive developments to report. It seems that Bavaria lives the longest. Among other things, the Bavarians have one of the highest life expectancies in Germany: Newborn boys today average 77.4 years, girls even 82.5 years. With 71,000 doctors, 379 hospitals and per capita health expenditure of 3,000 euros, the level of care is also above the national trend.

New structure of the health report The new structure of the health report is different. Because, according to Söder, you want to look at all statistics of children, adolescents, adults and seniors separately in order to identify trends and develop strategies. "We now have a database with which we can develop health strategies for the future," said Söder. In order to get a better grip on the problems in the future, Bavaria wanted to start a separate preventive campaign for each generation. According to the Minister's request, this should save costs in the future.

Focus on depression and men's health
The health of men should also focus more. The health of men has been neglected nationwide in recent years, even though men are more often affected by diseases than women on average. Special attention should also be given to mental disorders such as depression or “burn out”. "Ten percent of sick leave is now due to problems such as burnout or depression," said Söder. While 47 percent of all women in Bavaria take preventive care offers, only 17 percent of men practice it. "Men live less health consciously. We have to make it clear that going to the doctor is not a sign of weakness." This should also apply to seniors who should be better informed about cancer screening. The Ministry of Health wants to provide more information about accidents and risks, among other things, because falls over 65 are the third leading cause of death for people over 65.

In view of the difficult budget situation, it remains to be seen to what extent the Bavarian Ministry of Health will spend more money on prevention and education. This does not seem to be a problem for Minister Söder. "Addiction counseling and prevention work remain unabridged, we are at most shifting funds to the new focus," said Söder. (sb)

Also read:
Men's health report: Men are often depressed
Burn out usually hits the committed
More and more women addicted to alcohol

Photo credit: Andreas Hermsdorf /

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