Behavioral Risk Factors

Behavioral risk factors are often unhealthy behaviors that can be changed or prevented. These factors can include lack of exercise, poor nutrition, tobacco use, and excessive alcohol use. Behavioral risk factors are key influences that can contribute to the development of chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Nearly half of all adults are affected by one or more chronic health conditions, making it the leading causes of death and disability in the U.S. As a common contributor to many chronic diseases, behavioral risk factors can be addressed and changed to prevent the onset of chronic illness. Through both individual behavior and environmental change, negative behaviors can be reduced. 

General Health Status

Percent of Residents Rating Health as Fair or Poor by County, 2016. 



From the Missouri County-Level Study, 18.25 percent of Jackson County residents reported their health as fair or poor while 81.75 percent of residents reported their health as good, very good, or excellent. 

When compared to the rest of Missouri, Jackson County has a lower percent of those rating their health as fair or worse than most other counties. 

Data Source: DHSS, Missouri County-Level Study. 2016.



From the Missouri County-Level Study, Jackson County residents reported an average of 4.35 poor physical health days per month. 

When compared to the rest of Missouri, Jackson County reported a lower number of days than over half of the counties in the state. 

Data Source: DHSS, Missouri County-Level Study, 2016.

Average Number of Poor Physical Health Days by County, 2016. 

Obesity

Missouri currently has the 17th highest adult obesity rate in the nation, according to The State of Obesity. The obesity rate has slowly been increasing from 11.3% in 1990 to 21.4% in 2000 and 31.7% in 2016. Most of this can be attributed to personal behaviors such as increased food intake and decreased physical activity. However, outside influences also affect a person's weight through increased access to fast food, lack of nutritional education, food insecurity, and decreased opportunity for physical activity. Individuals who are obese are at risk for many serious diseases and conditions including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, gallbladder disease, some cancers, and even death. 

Obesity-Related Diagnoses Occurring in a Hospital Setting per 1,000 Total Population by ZIP Code, 2016. 

Data Source: Washington University School of Medicine, Hospital Industry Data Institute, Missouri ZIP Health Rankings. 2016.


For the all of Jackson County, approximately 64.94% of residents are obese or overweight which is lower than most counties in Missouri. ZIP Codes in the north and west of EJC had the highest rates of an obesity diagnosis. 

Physical Activity and Nutrition

Regular physical activity is one of the most important components for a healthy lifestyle. There are barriers that people face when trying to reach recommended levels of physical activity and understanding these barriers can help design and implement better solutions to promote physical activity. The most common barriers are a lack of time and safety concerns which can include fear of violence or lack of safe sidewalks or walkways. Other barriers within communities are availability of parks, bicycle trails or lanes, and walking paths. 

Percent of Residents Reporting No Leisure Time, Physical Activities, or Exercise, 2016. 



From the County Level Study, 27.43% of Jackson County resident responded "no" to the question: "During the past 30 days, other than your regular job, did you participate in any physical activities or exercise such as running, calisthenics, golf, gardening, or walking for exercise?"

This percent is lower than most other counties in the state of Missouri. 

Data Source: DHSS, Missouri County-Level Study. 2016. 

Nutrition is also an important component for reducing the risk of chronic disease and controlling weight. Having healthy and affordable food choices available within a community are important for making healthy choices. There are many different strategies that communities can adopt to ensure healthy food is available. These strategies include providing incentives for supermarkets or farmers markets to establish their business in undeserved areas, having nutritional information on restaurant and fast food menus, and applying nutritional standards in child care facilities, schools, hospitals, and work sites. 



From the County Level Study, 89.25% of Jackson County residents responded to having less than 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day during the last 30 days. The study asked specifically about fruit juice, fruit, beans, and vegetables for this question. 

This percent is in the middle when comparing all counties in Missouri.

Data Source: DHSS, Missouri County-Level Study. 2016.

Through survey data from the 2017 CHA, residents were able to indicate what behaviors they do or do not participate in. 

Percent of Residents Reporting Consuming Less than Five Servings of Fruits and Vegetables per Day by County, 2016.

Note: Survey data does not include responses from Independence Residents. 

Tobacco Use

Cigarette smoking is the number one cause of preventable death and disease in the U.S. Each year, smoking causes more than 480,000 deaths in the U.S. which is more than HIV, illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, and firearm related incidents combined. Tobacco use has been linked to many disease like heart disease, stroke, and cancer which are all in the top causes of death for EJC. Tobacco also has been found to increase absenteeism from work and increase health care utilization and cost. 


ZIP Codes in Independence, Raytown, Sugar Creek, Grandview, and Buckner had the highest rates of a smoking-related diagnosis. 

14.8 out of every 10,000 Jackson County deaths were linked directly to smoking.

In Jackson County, the average age of first use for students was 12.25 years. 

Smoking-Related Diagnoses Occurring in a Hospital per 1,000 Total Population by ZIP Codes, 2016. 

Data Source: Washington University School of Medicine, Hospital Industry Data Institute, Missouri ZIP Health Rankings. 2016.

Substance Misuse

Substance Misuse Diagnoses Occurring in a Hospital Setting per 1,000 Total Population by ZIP Code, 2016. 


In EJC, ZIP Codes in Independence, Raytown Grandview, Sugar Creek, and parts of Unincorporated EJC had the highest rates of a substance misuse diagnosis. 

This section is further broken down by type of substance which includes: alcohol, opioids, and prescription drugs. 

For more information on Mental Health in EJC, follow the link: 


Data Source: Washington University School of Medicine, Hospital Industry Data Institute, Missouri ZIP Health Rankings. 2016.

Alcohol Use

Excessive alcohol use, including binge drinking, can lead to increased health problems such as injuries, violence, liver disease, and cancer. Excessive alcohol use entails drinking 5 or more drinks for men and 4 or more drinks for women, on an occasion. Binge drinking is the most common, costly, and deadly pattern of excessive alcohol use in the U.S. It is more common among younger adults aged 18-34. It has been associated with many health problems such as injuries, violence, sexually transmitted diseases, unintended pregnancy, high blood pressure, stroke, heart or liver disease, and some type of cancers. 

Percent of Residents Classified as Heavy Drinkers by County, 2016. 

In Jackson County, 6.33% were labeled as a heavy drinking after responding to the question, "During the past 30 days, how many days per week or per month did you have at least one drink of any alcoholic beverage?". This percent is higher than most of the other counties in Missouri. 

In Jackson County, 15.57% of residents reported being a binge drinker after responding to the question, "Considering all types of alcoholic beverages, how many times during the past 30 days did you have (5 drinks for males/4 drinks for females) or more drinks on an occasion?". This percent is higher than most of the other counties in Missouri. 

Percent of Residents Classified as Binge Drinkers by County, 2016.

Data Source: Washington University School of Medicine, Hospital Industry Data Institute, Missouri ZIP Health Rankings. 2016.

Opioids and Prescription Drugs

 Prescription drug misuse involves taking prescription medication not prescribed to you or in a manner or dose other than prescribed. The three most commonly misused medications are opioids, depressants, and stimulants. Prescription drug misuse can lead to addiction, overdose, and even death. 

Rate of ER Visits due to Opioid Abuse by County, 2016. 

Jackson County was ranked 54th for counties in Missouri when comparing rates of ER visits due to opioids.

Note: Only counties  in Missouri with stable rates were included in ranking

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