The four leading causes of chronic disease

  • Date: June 15 2022
  • Read Time: 4 Min
  • Category: Health and Wellness
  • Location: Naples, FL

According to the National Library of Medicine, the four leading causes of chronic disease are linked to tobacco use, excessive alcohol consumption, lack of physical activity, and poor nutrition.

Except for some genetic conditions and extremely toxic environments, individual behavior typically plays a causal role in bringing about bad—as well as good—health.


For individuals to take causal and other responsibility for their health, they require, among other things, information that they can understand, affordable access to health care, and, oftentimes far more important, environments conducive to health in which capabilities may be developed so that one can flourish in life (Venkatapuram 2011; Ruger 2006). 

Ruger, J.P. 2006. Health, capability, and justice: Toward a new paradigm of health ethics, policy and law. Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy 15(2): 403–482.
Schmidt H. Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. 2016 Apr 13. In: H. Barrett D, W. Ortmann L, Dawson A, et al., editors. Public Health Ethics: Cases Spanning the Globe [Internet]. Cham (CH): Springer; 2016. Chapter 5. Available from: doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-23847-0_5
Venkatapuram, S. 2011. Health justice: An argument from the capabilities approach. Cambridge: Polity Press.