Singapore is 'world's healthiest country'

SINGAPORE - According to a Bloomberg ranking, Singapore comes out tops as the healthiest country in the world, followed closely by Italy, Australia and Switzerland.

So what makes a country healthier than another?

According to Bloomberg, it means having a healthy-living culture and a strong healthcare foundation and network, resulting in a longer life expectancy and lower death rates.

The final ranking was calculated based on a health-risk score which took into consideration factors such as cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, obesity rates, physically inactivity and extent of immunisation coverage.

This score was then deducted from a main health score which was calculated from basic health factors such as life expectancy at birth, infant mortality rate, causes of death and death rates of different age groups.

As such, the island-state's top ranking comes as no surprise, considering that if you live in Singapore, chances are you will live till the ripe old age of 82, according to statistics from the Ministry of Health Singapore.

Over the next five years, Singapore's healthcare spending is likely to double and by 2030, reach up to 3.5 per cent of the country's GDP - promising a robust and widespread healthcare system for its citizens.

As for health-risk factors, the smoking prevalence in Singapore is also relatively low, with about 14 per cent of adults smoking, and the typical Singaporeans diet, while not being completely ideal, is made up of mostly carbohydrates with lots of vegetables and side servings of meats and fish.

The same stands true for other countries in the top 20 list, such as Japan, the Netherlands and Sweden. The majority of these are developed countries with readily available health care, healthy national cuisine and active lifestyle options.

Take a look at which other countries made it into the list: