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Chinese healthy lifespan overtakes U.S. for 1st time: WHO
Chinese newborns now expected 68.7 years of healthy lifespan as against 68.5 years for the babies born in the United States, according to the latest statistics by the World Health Organization (WHO) made available on Wednesday.
China has overtaken the United States in healthy lifespan for the first time,  but American babies can still expect to live longer overall, 78.5 years compared to China's 76.4, but the last 10 years or so of American lives were not exoected to be healthy, WHO said in its report related to the year 2016.
The United States came 40th in the  global healthy lifespan ranking and China was 37th.
''The lost years of good health that are a factor in calculating healthy life expectancy at birth are fewer for China, Japan, Korea and some other high income Asian countries than for high income Western countries, said WHO spokesperson Alison Clements-Hunt in Geneva.
The rise in healthy life expectancy in China and other Asian countries was largely attributed to low-calorie diet for the local population as well as improving health facilities and services in the countries concerned.
The United States, however, ranked among the only five countries where healthy life expectancy fell in 2016, alongside Somalia ,Afghanistan, Georgia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, according to the WHO report.
The best outlook was for Singaporean babies who can count on 76.2 years of health on the average followed by Japan, Spain and Switzerland.
As for overall life expectancy, China is also catching up with the United States, which is falling from its peak 79 years registered in the year of 2014 due to increasing drug overdose deaths,  suicides and some other major causes among younger middle-aged Americans,  Clenments-Hunt said.
Japanese enjoyed the longest life expectancy of 84.2 years in 2016, according to the report.          

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