Italy is the world's second-healthiest country: report

The Local Italy
The Local Italy - [email protected]
Italy is the world's second-healthiest country: report
Vegetables at an Italian market. Photo: Depositphotos

Italy is known around the world for its healthy diet and lifestyle, so it comes as no surprise to hear it came second in a global index ranking countries worldwide on factors that contribute to the overall health of residents.


Italy was beaten to first place by neighbouring Spain in the 2019 edition of the Bloomberg Healthiest Country Index, which ranks 169 economies worldwide.

Four other European nations featured in the top ten: Iceland (third), Switzerland (fifth), Sweden (sixth) and Norway (ninth).

Australia was in tenth place. Canada came in at 16th, the UK ranked 19th, while the US lagged behind in 35th place.

The index grades nations based on variables – such as life expectancy – while subtracting points over risks such as tobacco use and obesity.

It also considers environmental factors, including access to clean water and sanitation.

READ ALSO: Cheese, wine and family: the Italian way to live beyond 100

The Mediterranean diet is partly responsible for Italy's high ranking on the list.

Researchers say eating habits may provide clues to health levels enjoyed by Spain and Italy, as a “Mediterranean diet, supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil or nuts, had a lower rate of major cardiovascular events than those assigned to a reduced-fat diet,” according to a study led by the University of Navarra Medical School.



Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also