In 2015, two Princeton University economists found some startling data hidden among taxpayer-funded government health reports. Mortality (death) rates of white, middle-aged Americans has been steadily on the rise since 1999.
The increasing mortality rates affect whites of both sexes nearly everywhere in the country. And whites without college education are experiencing the biggest impact.
By comparison, blacks, Hispanics and Europeans continue to experience declines in mortality rates, as they have for the past century.
One of the economists was recently awarded the Nobel Prize for important research related to this finding. (Interesting how the most significant health research often comes from non-medical researchers who use data overlooked by the mainstream medical-academic-government-industrial complex.)
The Princeton economists’ historic findings struck me so strongly, I reported on them two years ago, when they first came out. But the mainstream media didn’t seem to grasp their importance.
Finally, the mainstream media is giving some attention to this historic development. In March, the Washington Post ran an article on the findings in their Health & Science section. (It seems one can still hope to find some real facts reported in at least one section of that paper.)
Massive consequences for an entire population
Let me put the Princeton findings into context. Before this point, mortality rates have never been observed to increase in any population group in modern history!
The picture is so bleak, the Princeton economists just extended their observations by an additional two years to see if the trend held up. But even with this adjustment, nothing eased the shocking spike in mortality among white, middle-aged Americans.
Experts link the increase in white, middle-aged mortality with epidemics of chronic pain, obesity, stress, and alcohol and drug addiction. Of course, these problems connect with each other and with increasing deaths from illicit and prescription drug overdoses — both intentional (suicide) and accidental. Indeed, overuse of opioid pain drugs killed more than 30,000 Americans in 2015 alone.
Princeton economists dig deeper
The two Princeton economists recently presented some further explanations, based on individual interview data.
First, there has been a continuous decline among less-educated white people for a generation or more. They are worse off than their parents and the households in which they grew up.
Second, housing became unaffordable. So — meeting basic family expenses has required both parents to work, creating additional stresses and negatively impacting family life. After two centuries, the “upward mobility” of the middle class had stalled in America, and has now gone into reverse.
Third, white, middle-aged Americans now have fewer aspirations. Of course, modern medicine does not measure a person’s aspirations. Nor does it take aspiration seriously. Although ancient Ayurveda and Chinese medicine certainly do. Expectations are part of one’s spirit. But — with apologies to Charles Dickens — expectations are just not “great” anymore for most white, middle-aged, less-educated Americans.
By contrast, most blacks, Hispanics, or immigrants did not have as good prospects over the last two centuries. However, it appears they still aspire for a better life, and their lives have been consistently improving. Therefore, their health and mortality have also continued to improve.
Racial gap narrows — but in unhealthy way
Overall, whites continue to have a longer life expectancy than blacks and lower death rates. (Even despite the recent backslide among whites.) But that gap has narrowed substantially since the 1990s.
In fact, as you may recall, I participated in developing the Healthy People 2000 and 2010 national health goals. It was largely a publicity stunt by government health bureaucrats.
One of the “flagship” goals was to reduce “health disparities” between different population groups. Indeed, it appears that feat has been accomplished.
Don’t get me wrong — it is great to see improving health and declining mortality among blacks. But what a shock that the gap has been narrowed partially due to worsening conditions among whites. Sounds just like a typical government program.
Mortality rates among Hispanic are better than whites, although they have more of the government’s favorite “risk factors.” Hispanics apparently are able to offset the “risk factors” with their more traditional diets, lifestyles, and family structures.
Also, white men continue to die at higher rates than white women in every age group. But women started out with lower mortality rates, going back to at least the 19th century. So, the recent mortality increase among women reflects an even greater change in their likelihood of dying early. In fact, middle-aged white men are about twice as likely to die young today as they were in 1999. While middle-aged white women are now about four times more likely to die young as they were.
It was often said, during the 20th century, that men died younger due to the stresses of the workplace. Now — women have the same “equal opportunity” to die young.
And as I reported earlier this week, mainstream medical research does not even include women in many health studies — but they are included when it comes to skyrocketing mortality rates.
Of course, all these explanations are totally politically incorrect.
But the facts don’t lie.
Plus, as I always report, statisticians can’t manipulate mortality rates. The Grim Reaper either comes or he (she?) doesn’t. So, that data is about as hard as we are likely to get about anything when it comes to health.
More context for backslide in longevity
I see a few other factors in the background of this whole disaster, in addition to the ones examined by the Princeton economists, who after all are not medical professionals.
First, the government and mainstream medicine was all wrong all along about the so-called “risk factors” of dietary cholesterol, saturated fats and salt. In trying to follow this flawed advice, people ate more sugars and carbs, and fewer natural foods with adequate nutrients. That was their reward for paying attention to government health guidelines.
Second, the government and so-called health experts told us to avoid sunshine. So — we now face an epidemic of vitamin D deficiency, which contributes to virtually every modern chronic disease.
Third, Americans now take more drugs of all kinds, including cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, which do more harm than good.
The government has not helped improve the overall health of Americans in recent decades. But they did partially accomplish their goal of reducing health disparities among population groups. Of course, they accomplished it in part by worsening health and mortality among whites.
Sorry, but that’s not even “close enough for government work.”
Thankfully, Mother Nature offers real solutions to the failures of mainstream academic-government-industrial medicine.
Keep reading my Daily Dispatches and my monthly Insiders’ Cures newsletters (if you’re not yet a subscriber, you can sign up now by clicking here, and I’ll keep giving the latest updates on all the science showing the benefits of natural approaches to health and longevity.