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Israel – Health Issues

Health Issues in Israel

years. However, like many countries, Israel faces a number of health issues, both common and unique to its population. In this article, we will explore some of the most prevalent health issues in Israel, as well as attitudes towards smoking and legislation in place to regulate it.

Common Health Issues in Israel

Cardiovascular Disease

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is one of the leading causes of death in Israel. According to the Ministry of Health, CVD accounts for around 25% of all deaths in the country. Factors contributing to the prevalence of CVD include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, and physical inactivity.


Cancer is also a major health concern in Israel, with an estimated 29,000 new cases diagnosed each year. The most common types of cancer in Israel are breast, lung, and colon cancer. Like CVD, factors such as obesity, smoking, and physical inactivity contribute to the prevalence of cancer.

Mental Health

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Mental health is another important issue in Israel, with an estimated one in five Israelis experiencing a mental health disorder in their lifetime. Depression and anxiety are among the most common mental health conditions, with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) being a particular concern due to the country’s history of conflict.


Diabetes is also a significant health issue in Israel, affecting an estimated 400,000 people. Type 2 diabetes, which is associated with lifestyle factors such as diet and physical activity, is the most common form of the disease.

Smoking in Israel

Smoking is a significant public health concern in Israel. According to the Ministry of Health, around 20% of the Israeli population smokes, with men more likely to smoke than women. The prevalence of smoking is particularly high among young adults aged 18-24, with around 32% of this age group reporting that they smoke.

Attitudes towards Smoking

Attitudes towards smoking in Israel have shifted significantly in recent years. In the past, smoking was viewed as socially acceptable, and smoking rates were relatively high. However, in recent years there has been a significant shift in attitudes towards smoking, with smoking increasingly viewed as a harmful and socially unacceptable habit.


Israel has implemented a range of legislation to regulate smoking and reduce smoking rates. In 1983, Israel was one of the first countries in the world to introduce a ban on smoking in workplaces, and this was followed by a ban on smoking in public places in 2007. The country has also implemented a range of measures aimed at reducing smoking rates, including high taxes on tobacco products, restrictions on tobacco advertising, and education campaigns aimed at raising awareness of the harms of smoking.

Despite these measures, smoking rates in Israel remain relatively high, particularly among young adults. The Israeli government continues to explore new measures aimed at reducing smoking rates, including a proposed ban on smoking in cars carrying children.

Israel faces a range of health issues, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, mental health, and diabetes. While the country’s healthcare system is well-developed and boasts a high life expectancy rate, there is still significant work to be done to address these health concerns. Smoking is also a significant public health concern in Israel, and while the government has implemented a range of measures aimed at reducing smoking rates, there is still work to be done to change attitudes towards smoking and reduce smoking rates further.

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