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By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – For many years, professionals have noted that people with less education are less healthy. With the rise in heart disease and diabetes, more attention is being paid to the statistics.

Those with better education live longer and are more productive.

According to the Center on Society and Health‘s website, data in the Education and Health initiative, show even a 1% increase in the percentage of Americans with some college education could save $1.3 billion per year in avoided medical care for just one disease: diabetes.

Since the 1990’s life expectancy has decreased for people without a high school education, especially white women. Less educated people are likely to have more risk factors that predict disease, such as obesity and smoking.

In 2011, smoking was reported by 37% of people without a high school diploma or GED, but only 8% of those with a bachelor’s degree.

We urge kids to stay in school, graduate, get more education for careers and self-sufficiency; we need to tell them more about health.

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