Croatians might enjoy a healthy diet and relatively stress-free surroundings but the relaxed and laid-back Mediterranean lifestyle isn’t as healthy as it seems. According to figures just released by the European Union Croatians enjoy a much shorter healthy life than their European counterparts. Eurostat, the statistical department of the EU, have released figures showing that the average Healthy Life Expectancy for Europeans on average was 64.2 years for women and 63.5 years for men in 2016. This index measures the age that people can expect good health, without suffering from disease or major illness.
However, in Croatia the Healthy Life Expectancy Index was considerably lower than the European average. The average for men was only 57.1 years and for women 58.7 years. Whether this is down to the large number of Croatians who smoke or poor medical support is unknown but what is known is that it is not encouraging and quite clearly the Ministry of Health have plenty of work to do.
By country, Sweden had the highest HLE on record, with 73.3 years for women and 73.0 years for men. At the bottom of the EU ranking was Latvia, with HLE at 54.9 years for women and 52.3 years for men. Eurostat noted that such a large difference can be in part attributed to different criteria various countries use to measure health-related activity limitations.