Civilization Diseases

By | June 10, 2022

Diseases of civilization are diseases and symptoms whose causes lie in a comfortable and resource-rich social standard.

A lack of exercise, excessive and frequent food intake and an increasingly anonymized environment lead to physical and psychological complaints. In technically less developed societies, complaints of this type occur significantly less or not at all.

What are lifestyle diseases?

The definition of civilization diseases refers to the separation between industrialized nations and developing or third world countries. Technical progress, “civilization” itself, is not usually held responsible for the emergence of so-called civilization diseases. Rather, certain clinical pictures arise more frequently and more easily from the possibilities and circumstances that the developments bring with them.¬†For meanings of peroxisomal disease, please visit

The term is not clearly defined scientifically. Both the diseases themselves and some of the suspected influences and causes are assessed differently. However, there is broad agreement on the classification of some influences as risk factors.

In the case of physical illnesses, these include excessive sugar consumption, lack of exercise, overeating, alcohol consumption, excessive hygiene, etc. For mental diseases of civilization, stress, noise, pressure to perform, certain social norms and the like are almost undisputed factors.

These factors predominate to a disease-causing extent in industrialized nations. Food is plentiful there and the daily routine is not necessarily characterized by physical activity. Increasing expectations of employees, large cities with so-called “noise pollution” due to high traffic volumes, construction sites, etc. and loneliness also lead to psychological impairment.


Most civilization diseases result from unhealthy developments in societies that are viewed as progressive, which do not occur in this form in less developed countries. Malnutrition and overnutrition as well as sugar consumption are one of the major factors in the development of many lifestyle diseases. Unhealthy nutrition is a major threat because it can be the cause of a large number of possible diseases, appeals to people’s sense of pleasure and for convenience and practical reasons can quickly become a habit that is usually difficult to correct.

A large amount of sugar is added to many finished or industrially manufactured products. Sugar is also taken in with drinks such as lemonades or juices, almost without creating a feeling of satiety.

Fat is used extensively as a flavor carrier, especially in fast food and convenience products. In addition to the risk of caries and diabetes, the probability of being overweight increases due to an excess of calories. This is quickly reached, especially when the person moves little.

Overweight, in turn, can bring with it a variety of other diseases: high blood pressure, fatty liver, heart problems, high cholesterol levels, colon cancer, etc. A sedative lifestyle, which is often caused by office work, contributes to this problem. A large part of the population in industrialized nations spends a lot of time sitting down, which, combined with a diet high in fat and sugar, quickly leads to an enormous excess of calories.

Apart from that, however, other clinical pictures are also favored by a lack of exercise or incorrect posture. Back problems are among the most widespread diseases of civilization and can lead to incapacity to work. They can often be improved or completely eliminated through recreational sport, but it is often difficult for employees, especially full-time employees, to incorporate regular exercise into their daily routine.

Certain types of cancer are more common in industrial societies, such as lung cancer, which is caused by smoking or high smog levels. This includes colon cancer. Again, an overabundant and high-fat diet is responsible for this. A lack of roughage, which is mainly found in vegetables, cereals and fruit, is also discussed as a possible cause.

However, the high number of cancer cases in industrial societies is partly due to the fact that the people of these countries live much longer on average and are therefore more susceptible to cancer due to aging and the reduced ability to regenerate.

According to some researchers, excessive hygiene, as is often the case in industrialized nations, promotes the development of certain allergies. Longer breastfeeding periods and more contact with nature or farm animals during pregnancy can protect children from developing some allergies.

On the other hand, fine dust pollution is said to be responsible for an increased occurrence of allergies. Allergenic substances can “stick” to fine dust particles and thus penetrate deeper into the lungs.

Symptoms & Ailments

In view of the large number of civilization diseases, the list of possible symptoms is very long. A distinction must be made between mental and physical symptoms. One can be an expression or complement of the other.

Persistent physical symptoms or deficiency symptoms can result in mental stress or depression. Diet -related cancer can lead to a mental crisis. At the same time, mental diseases of civilization can find expression on the physical level.

For example, depression is often accompanied by physical symptoms such as chronic back pain, psychosomatic headaches, stomach problems or feelings of weakness. This made it difficult to recognize some civilization diseases as such based on the symptoms.

Civilization diseases can also include inner attitudes that lead to addictive behavior. One example is our beauty and slimness ideals. These can lead to surgical changes on the body, to symptoms such as eating disorders or full-body tattoos. The actual symptom – a misunderstanding of one’s own body – is often overlaid by other symptoms.

The symptoms of anorexia are complex. The actual symptom respectively. Finding the cause of the present condition can be difficult. Social influences play a role in many lifestyle diseases. So it can be understood as a symptom of a certain social order when people in civilized nations become mentally or physically ill.

As long as symptoms of lifestyle diseases are traced back to personal circumstances, this context is ignored. Obesity or diabetes are social and personal problems. Both might never have come about under different social conditions.

When should you go to the doctor?

If the person concerned suffers from a loss of well-being, an inner restlessness or an impairment of his quality of life, in many cases an optimization can be carried out independently with an objective examination of the living habits. If you manage to improve your health on your own, you usually don’t need a doctor. If the discomfort persists or increases in intensity, it is advisable to seek medical help.

If there are cardiac arrhythmias, obesity or a decrease in general performance, a visit to a doctor is recommended. A change in personality, a depressed mood lasting several weeks or months, and behavioral problems should be discussed with a doctor. Headaches, back problems, inner weakness and weight fluctuations are warning signs of the body. A medical examination is advisable so that the cause can be clarified.

There is also a need for action in the case of swelling, listlessness and apathy. A gradual progression of the disease is characteristic of current lifestyle diseases. Disorders in the gastrointestinal tract, loss of libido and a general feeling of illness should be clarified by a doctor. If inflammation or irritation occurs frequently, a doctor’s visit is also advisable.


Civilization diseases are closely related to the modern, often insatiable lifestyle of the western world. If you want to stay healthy after the therapy or want to stabilize the condition you have reached, you can achieve this through a consistent change in behavior as part of the aftercare. This can be discussed with a large number of competent professional groups.

The primary point of contact is the family doctor, but internists and cardiologists, nutritionists and dieticians, sports and physiotherapists and fitness trainers can also provide targeted support for aftercare activities. A healthy diet and sufficient exercise are important pillars in the aftercare of civilization diseases, as they have a positive influence on the cardiovascular system and metabolism.

Fat reduction is also helpful for the joints in many cases. A Mediterranean diet with fruit and vegetables, replacing vegetable fats with animal fats and a significant reduction in the consumption of sugar and alcohol are important components of aftercare. The sporting activity is based on the performance level of those affected. The basis is endurance training and strength training.

Endurance sports are suitable for reducing fat and training the cardiovascular system. Weight training promotes the muscles, which burn calories as the body’s power plant. In addition, strength training strengthens the muscular balance, which can also be impaired by office work or one-sided industrial jobs. Weakened muscles are built up, while shortened sections should be stretched.

You can do that yourself

Every individual has the opportunity to do something themselves against diseases of civilization and their consequences. Everyday measures such as a healthier diet are sufficient. This includes, for example, reducing excessive salt consumption, which promotes the storage of water in the tissue and thus promotes the development of high blood pressure. According to the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO), a maximum of 6 grams of salt should be consumed per day.

A healthy diet also includes reducing sugar. Typical civilization diseases such as diabetes mellitus are promoted by excessive sugar consumption. Sugar clogs the arteries and increases blood pressure. It can also affect the eyes or kidneys. For adults, a sugar consumption of 60 grams per day is sufficient. Caution is advised with foods that contain hidden sugar, such as ready-made salads, potato chips or ketchup.

If you are overweight, you should lose it. It promotes high blood pressure and diabetes. A body mass index of 20 to 25 is considered healthy. In order to achieve this, moderate sports training and a gradual change in diet are recommended. Excessive consumption of alcohol also promotes lifestyle diseases. Therefore, men should not drink more than 0.6 liters of beer or 0.3 liters of wine per day. For women, the maximum is 0.3 liters of beer and 0.15 liters of wine.

Other important self-help measures are regular exercise and stopping smoking.

Civilization Diseases