Many a truth is said in jest. While we fight over the cost of health care mostly looking in the wrong places for the culprit (like premiums and health insurer competition), we overlook the obvious.
International comparisons show the US pays more for health care than just about anyone else, but does not have the best health outcomes in some cases or the longest life expectancies despite the fact we have the best health care in the world.
What those cold statistics fail to show is the difference in populations and life styles. For example, the US ranks 19th (33.7% obesity rate) among the most obese countries of the world behind a few small countries you may never heard of like Palau, Nauru, and Kiribati. On the other hand, Sweden ranks 92 and Japan 184 with a 3.3% obesity rate.
Of course, it’s not all as simple as these pictures imply, however, there is a lot of truth in the story they tell. If we want to control our health care costs, we need to do as much as possible to control factors that lead to the use of health care.