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Cigarette, soda intake drops among New Yorkers, according to city Health Department

Data show health disparities persist between income brackets and ethnic groups.

The number of New York City residents who

The number of New York City residents who smoke dipped slightly from 15 percent to 14 percent between 2011-13 and 2015-16, according to the 2018 Community Health Profiles. Photo Credit: Getty Images/Mac99

New Yorkers are so over their cigarettes and soda, according to new statistics being released on Friday by the city Health Department.

The number of city residents who consume sugary drinks has dropped from 27 percent in 2011-13 to 23 percent in 2015-16, while smoking dipped slightly from 15 percent to 14 percent during the same time, according to the 2018 Community Health Profiles.

But health disparities  among income brackets and ethnic groups persist despite a series of public health initiatives.

Average life expectancy among people who live on the Upper East Side is 85.9 years, 11 years longer than the 75.1 age for Brownsville residents, for example, according to the profiles. And while the teen birth rate in the Bronx has dropped, it’s still the highest in the city at 28.4 per 1,000  live births in 2013-15 — down from 34.4 in 2011-13.

“These profiles provide important information about the particular needs of different communities; they will inform policymaking and programming to help eliminate health disparities among neighborhoods in New York City,” Health Commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot said in a statement.

Researchers create profiles for each of the 59 community districts in the city by looking at a number of factors, ranging from rates of obesity and diabetes to air pollution and absentee rates in local elementary schools. The data are cobbled together from different sources, including the U.S. Census Bureau and the Health Department’s own Community Health Survey. The most recent profiles were released in 2015, the first time since 2006.

New categories were added to the latest profiles, such as binge drinking, food environment and whether or not people find their neighbors helpful.

Researchers also found that the number of New Yorkers who do not have health insurance dropped from 20 percent to 12 percent.

Other notable findings include: Belmont and East Tremont in the Bronx had just one supermarket for every 37 bodegas in 2016; 86 percent of residents in Tottenville and Great Kills in Staten Island said their neighbors help one another compared to 57 percent in Mott Haven-Melrose and Hunts Point Longwood.

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