List of reasons for death in the UK (5+)

In this blog post, we will share a list of reasons for death in the UK. We will also talk about the two leading causes of death in the UK for males and females and how to prevent them. 

List of reasons for death in the UK

Below is a list of reasons for death in the UK. You will read about the leading causes of death in the UK according to the Office for National Statistics. 

  • Ischemic heart disease (IHD)
  • Dementia and Alzheimer disease 
  • Cancer
  • Stroke
  • Lung disease
  • Liver disease.

List of reasons for death in the UK for those aged 80 years and over

For both males and females aged 80 years and over the leading cause of death in the UK is dementia and Alzheimer disease accounting for 15.1% in the year 2018. 

List of reasons for death in the UK for those aged 65 to 79 years

  • For males aged 65 to 79 years, the leading cause of death in the UK is IHD or heart disease.
  • For females aged 65 to 79 years, the leading cause of death in the UK is a malignant neoplasm of the trachea, bronchus and lung.  

List of reasons for death in the UK for those aged 50 to 64 years

  • For males aged 50 to 64 years, the leading cause of death in the UK remains IHD.
  • For females aged 50 to 64 years, the leading cause of death in the UK remains a malignant neoplasm of the trachea, bronchus and lung.  

List of reasons for death in the UK  for the younger age groups

For both males and females aged 20 to 49 years,  the leading cause of death in the UK is suicide and injury or poisoning of undetermined intent.

Other reasons for death in the UK

  • Digestive disease
  • Road injuries
  • Diabetes
  • Kidney diseases
  • Homicide
  • Suicide
  • Parkinson disease
  • Alcohol use disorders
  • Drug use disorders
  • Hepatitis
  • Fire
  • Poisonings.

IHD – the leading cause among the male deaths in the UK

Ischemic heart disease, or coronary artery disease, is a disease caused by narrowing of the arteries leading to the heart. This problem causes less blood flow to the heart and causes an imbalance in the supply of oxygen to the myocardium (muscle tissue of the heart).

Non-modifiable risk factors for ischemic heart disease are the patient’s age, gender, and genetics.

Modifiable risk factors are those circumstances that can lead to the onset of the disease and whose existence depends on the patient himself. In these risk factors, the style and lifestyle of the patient himself are important for their reduction. They are divided into two large groups, according to their impact on the development of the disease, differentiating between major and minor risk factors.

Major modifiable risk factors for ischemic heart disease are:

  1. Poorly controlled arterial hypertension: the changes that occur in the arterial wall due to the existence of excessive blood pressure prolonged over time favour the reduction of the lumen of the vessel and hinder the passage of blood through it, making it difficult to supply oxygen to tissues. 

In the case of the heart, ischemia will appear with slight or moderate increases in demand, which can manifest as angina or myocardial infarction. For this reason, strict control of blood pressure in the short, medium and long term is considered of great importance, even in very advanced ages of life.

  1. Poorly controlled diabetes mellitus: the increase in the amount of circulating glucose in the blood favours the appearance of changes in the arterial wall in a sense similar to that of arterial hypertension, producing similar final effects. 

The risk increases exponentially if both risk factors are present. Thus, the control of blood glucose levels in patients with diabetes is essential to avoid the onset of ischemic heart disease at all ages.

  1. Poorly controlled dyslipidemia: consists of the alteration of fat concentrations in the blood (especially total cholesterol, its derivatives and triglycerides). The deposit of these components on the wall of the arterial vessels also causes the gradual narrowing of their lumen, in the same sense as arterial hypertension or the changes caused by poor control of diabetes. 

Thus, following a healthy diet low in saturated fat and refined sugars will be of great importance in the prevention of ischemic heart disease.

  1. Smoking: Smoking increases the risk of suffering from ischemic heart disease and is considered to counteract the effectiveness of treatments against this disease. Thus, total smoking cessation, even in advanced ages, results in a decrease in the occurrence of ischemic heart disease in patients of all ages.

Minor modifiable risk factors for ischemic heart disease include:

  1. Control of obesity and reduction of overweight. Preventive medicine for the elderly. Prevention of ischemic heart disease
  2. Carrying out regular physical exercise (at least three weekly sessions of about 4 minutes) and avoiding sedentary life.
  3. Consumption of a healthy diet (Mediterranean diet), rich in vitamin C, carotenes, fruits and vegetables, with a variety of foods and reducing the intake of saturated fats (of animal origin) and increasing the proportion of unsaturated fats (of vegetable origin).
  1. Control and reduction of stress.

Dementia and Alzheimer – the leading cause of death in the UK for females

Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease that begins to manifest itself with mild memory loss or the inability to maintain the thread of a conversation. The deterioration is progressive until it progresses to areas such as language, the ability to calculate and the sense of orientation, preventing the person from carrying out their daily activities normally.

Although there is still no proven strategy to prevent Alzheimer’s, there is strong evidence that several factors related to a healthy lifestyle can have a positive effect on reducing the risk of developing this disease.

Studies suggest that factors related to good health can also reduce the risk of dementia and cognitive decline. These factors include regular physical activity, healthy eating, and maintaining brain activity through lifelong learning.

Therefore, some factors that would help prevent Alzheimer’s are:

  1. Exercise your body and mind: Physical exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, and some studies indicate that it can improve cognitive agility. For an Alzheimer’s patient, exercise can help maintain muscle strength, decrease frailty, and improve mood.
  1. Some research indicates that “exercising our brains” through activities such as reading, learning a musical instrument or playing chess, can help protect people from cognitive decline later in life.
  1. Lower the risk of head trauma:  A traumatic brain injury (blow or fracture) generated during military duties or sports activities may be associated with Alzheimer’s.

The risk increases if the injury involves loss of consciousness, or if the patient has had multiple head injuries from contact sports. This discovery is driving public health efforts to improve the quality of protective helmets and reduce head injury rates in certain sports.

  1. Have sufficient and restful sleep:  Sleeping badly, not getting enough sleep or sleeping but not resting has serious consequences on the well-being of the body, both organically and in its performance.

    At present, the role of abnormalities in cognitive impairment and dementia is recognized. The effects of breathing symptoms with sleep disturbances, such as snoring and shortness of breath on waking, have also been analyzed.

    A good rest is synonymous with health, therefore, it is essential to sleep well to prevent cognitive deterioration that can lead to some type of neurological problem such as Alzheimer’s.
  1. Avoid social isolation: This aspect of prevention involves the participation of all health professionals, family members and friends. Avoiding isolating older people and helping them stay active is everyone’s job in Alzheimer’s prevention.

Living a long and healthy life

Our planet does not resist the increasing degradation, the demographic explosion of billions of beings in exponential progression. In 1914 there were about twelve hundred million inhabitants on the planet, now in a century we already exceed seven billion widely. This is crazy. And they deceive us with dangers and catastrophes that they cause from China to Russia, from the US to the Pacific Ocean. 

For this reason, it is necessary to remain alert and take care of the environment and the inhumane situation of billions of beings due to lack of a sensible education in hygiene, reproductive health, iatrogenesis, hunger, decent work, adequate housing, care for the elderly who each time they “last” more years, but they do not live better.

It is possible and necessary to maintain a healthy lifestyle because when we get older in years, health is something more than the absence of disease, as declared by the WHO, but a general state of satisfaction, well-being.

A healthy lifestyle means maintaining consistent activities, physical exercise daily, even if it is walking an hour, healthy food that is scientifically proven that it brings more life to the years and not the incomprehensible number of years with a sedentary, dependent, polymedicated life and in the best of cases, hospitalized in a nursing home.


In this article, we talked about the leading reasons for death in the UK. We found out that IHD  remains the main cause of male deaths and Dementia and Alzheimer has become the leading cause of death for females.

In addition to knowing how diseases and injuries affect the population, one of the most important indicators for evaluating the effectiveness of countries’ health systems is the annual number of deaths and their cause.

Statistics on causes of death help health authorities guide future public health activities. For example, when mortality from heart disease and diabetes skyrockets in a few years, it is very convenient to launch a powerful program to promote ways of life that help prevent these diseases. 

Similarly, if a country has high infant mortality from pneumonia and the budget devoted to providing effective treatments is low, spending in this area can be increased.

If you have any questions or comments on the content, please let us know. 


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