Right now it is flu season in the northern hemisphere. The flu (influenza) is a contagious respiratory disease caused by influenza viruses.
Google Trends created the map shown above, based on aggregate data generated by users searching for the word “flu” and related terms, in order to estimate flu activity worldwide. According to data captured by Google Trends, flu activity is very intense in the U.S. at the moment. Canada, Russia, Norway, Poland, the Netherlands and Japan show high flu activity as well.
As can be seen in the map, the flu has spread relatively quickly in the last three weeks throughout the continental United States. California, Mississippi and the District of Columbia show local influenza activity at the moment.
According to an article published by Scientific American, based on data from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), tobacco use decreased in the U.S. in 2010, comparing to 1995. There are still some states where the use of tobacco constitutes a severe problem. Such is the case of West Virginia and Oklahoma. The best state in terms of tobacco use is Utah, with the lowest levels nationwide.
According to an article published by Scientific American, based on data from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heavy drinking has increased in several states. The heaviest drinking states are located in the Northeast, the worst of all Vermont, based on data for 2010. Heavy drinking is defined as two or more drinks per day for men, and one or more drinks per day for women.
According to data from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), most states have become healthier in terms of physical activity for the years between 2001 and 2007, excluding Louisiana and Mississippi which have less than 40% of healthy residents.
The CDC defines as “healthy people” those who engage in moderate-intensity physical activity at least 5 days a week for 30 minutes a day, or those who engage in vigorous-intensity physical activity at least 3 days a week for 20 minutes a day.
It is interesting to note, though, that data displayed on these maps tells a different story than data for the obesity rate in the United States. As we showed on a previous post, the obesity rate in the U.S. has been rising steadily since at least 1991. There is a clear contradiction between the rise in obesity rates and the rise in the percentage of healthy people.