Bupa Health Pulse Survey Reveals Mexicans Lead Unhealthy Lifestyles

Bupa – a leading international healthcare company – revealed results from its international Health Pulse study, indicating that a majority of the Mexican population surveyed leads unhealthy lifestyles despite fears of long-term chronic disease.

Relevant facts indicate:

– More than one-half (53%) of Mexicans admit they only exercise for an hour a week or less

– Three in four (73%) drink alcohol

– One-third (34%) smoke, according to Bupa’s survey. This is higher than the international average of 71 percent who drink and the 29 percent who admit to smoking.

While this unhealthy lifestyle might suggest those surveyed don’t care about their health, more than nine in ten (93%) say they are worried about developing a chronic disease.

The Bupa Health Pulse 2010 study surveyed more than 12,000 people across the world about their attitudes and perceptions towards chronic diseases. Results revealed that one-third of Mexicans (33%) are most worried about cancer, and one in ten is most worried about heart disease (12%) and diabetes (14%).

“Healthy lifestyle choices among the surveyed are clearly missing, yet chronic disease is most prevalent among the general population“ said Dr. Eddie Sollie, medical director for Bupa Latin America and the Caribbean. “What’s most concerning is that many of these diseases are preventable, and we know that exercise and nutrition are effective lifestyle choices to reduce the risk of developing long-term conditions.”

“As a leading international healthcare provider, Bupa has the expertise and resources to offer its insureds knowledge about chronic disease prevention and treatment” added Fabian Casaubon, managing director for Bupa Mexico. “We welcome the opportunity to shape perceptions and encourage all Mexicans to make life-saving decisions.”

A Bupa-commissioned report[1] by the London School of Economics (LSE), also published today, reveals the scale and impact of chronic disease in society. Among other findings the report reveals that even tough Mexicans are most concerned about cancer, and heart disease is the leading cause of death.

“Chronic disease is the leading cause of death and disability globally, representing 60 percent of all deaths in Mexico,” added Senior Research Fellow, LSE, Julien Forder.

The Bupa Health Pulse study also showed that nearly one-third (30%) of cardiovascular disease and more than one-fourth (27%) of diabetes could be avoided if everyone began to incorporate exercise to their daily routine. When asked to name their biggest barrier to making healthier lifestyle choices, one-third of those surveyed stated it was lack of time (33%), while almost one-fourth (23%) stated it was due to the expense.

Additional Mexico-specific statistics from Bupa Health Pulse 2010:

· More than nine in ten Mexicans (93%) worry about developing a chronic disease

· Just under two-thirds of Mexicans (64%) believe that obesity is the biggest health problem in Mexico, in terms of number of sufferers

· More than one-half (52%) of those surveyed have had a check-up with the doctor in the past 12 months to assess their risk of developing a chronic disease; almost one-fourth (24%) have done nothing

· Of those who have done nothing, one-half (50%) state that this is due to cost

· Twenty-three percent of Mexicans worry the most about not being able to afford the best possible treatment if they develop a chronic disease

· Almost one-fourth (23%) believe they will die from old age

About Bupa México Compañía de Seguros S.A. de C.V.

Bupa Mexico S.A. de C.V. is a divisional member of the Bupa Group of companies, a leading international healthcare company.

Established in 1947, Bupa has over ten million customers in more than 190 countries and employees over 52,000 people around the world. Its main interests are health insurance, care homes for young disabled and the elderly, health services, health assessments, and chronic disease management, including health coaching and healthcare services in the home. Bupa has no shareholders and it reinvests its funds to provide better healthcare for its customers, helping them to live longer, happier, and healthier lives. For more information on Bupa and Bupa Mexico please visit www.bupa.com and www.bupa.com.mx

About Bupa

Bupa’s purpose is to help people lead longer, healthier, happier lives.

A leading international healthcare group, we offer personal and company health insurance, run care homes for older people and hospitals, and provide workplace health services, health assessments and chronic disease management services, including health coaching, and home healthcare.

With no shareholders, we invest our profits to provide more and better healthcare. We are committed to making quality, patient-centred, affordable healthcare more accessible in the areas of wellness, chronic disease management, and ageing.

Employing over 50,000 people, Bupa has operations around the world, principally in the UK, Australia, Spain, New Zealand and the USA, as well as Hong Kong, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, India, China and across Latin America.

For more information, visit www.bupa.com

[1] J Forder. Chronic Disease: an international perspective, London School of Economics: examines chronic disease and contextualizes the Bupa Health Pulse 2010 findings