Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

According to the Roy Morgan Health Monitor, 25% of all people suffering from lung and breathing illnesses still smoke. In other signs of bad health, although almost three quarters of people with lung and breathing illnesses (74%) say “I would like to lose weight” and 51% say “I’m concerned about my cholesterol level”, 84% purchased from a fast food restaurant in the last four weeks and 72% agree that “I like healthy food but don’t want to compromise on taste”.

The research found in an average year some 38% or about 92 million Americans aged 14 and over report suffering from some form of lung and breathing illness – the most common form being hay fever (reported by 17% or 40.4 million people), snoring (16% or almost 39 million people) and asthma (9% or 22.2 million people). Less common lung and breathing illnesses recorded in the survey include bronchitis, sleep apnea, respiratory problems, emphysema, pneumonia, excess mucus, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and emphysema.

More women than men suffer from lung and breathing illnesses. The only lung and breathing illness suffered by more men than women is snoring, with 20.9 million men saying they snore compared to 17.8 million women. Among women surveyed 40%, representing an estimated 49.9 million women, report suffering lung and breathing illnesses, with the most common being hay fever. Among men surveyed 35%, an estimated 42.2 million, report suffering from lung and breathing illnesses – the most common being snoring.

Analysis by age shows the incidence of lung and breathing illnesses increases with age – with a higher incidence amongst adults aged over 35 years than under 35 years. The one exception is asthma, with 11% of 14-24 year olds, an estimated 5.1 million, suffering from asthma.

Chart: Incidence of Lung and Breathing Illnesses analyzed by gender and age

Source: Roy Morgan International, n=13,672.

If we were to draw a pen portrait of a person with lung or breathing illness she or he could come from any socio-economic background but would be  more likely than the average American to be aged 35 years or older, obese and, perhaps as a result of their illness,  less likely to participate in sports. Americans with lung and breathing illnesses are also more likely to keep to themselves – for example, they are more likely than the average American to agree with the sentiments: “When I'm at home, I like to shut myself off from the rest of the world” and “I'm shy in social situations” and more likely to disagree with the sentiment “It’s important to have a full social life”.

Portia Morgan, Vice President Business Development at Roy Morgan International says:

“This new study provides rich detail about the daily lives, activities, financial situation and media usage of Americans suffering from lung and breathing illnesses and various other diseases.  It also provides information about other health problems suffered by Americans with breathing and lung illnesses and real insights into their attitudes in all areas of life, one example being that lung and breathing illness sufferers are less likely to be around people all the time. Each different lung and breathing illness will affect sufferers’ lifestyles differently, which is why the selection of profiles on the Online Store looking at each illness individually can provide real and accurate insights.”

The above findings are part of a much larger health profile study with 13,672 Americans conducted by Roy Morgan International. Comparative studies have also been conducted in Australia, UK and New Zealand. Respondents self reported having the illness or condition in the last 12 months at the time of interview.

A comprehensive profile on American Lung and Breathing Sufferers including their demographics, attitudes, activities and media consumption is available. Also available are profiles of Americans with specific types of lung and breathing problems including asthma, bronchitis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, excess mucus, hay fever, pneumonia, respiratory problems, sleep apnea and snoring.

Detailed Roy Morgan Profiles for people with 157 other illnesses, including Allergies, Cold and Flu, Bones, Joints and Muscles, Cancer, Heart and Circulation, Digestive System, Mental Illness, Skin, Hair and Nails, Reproductive System and many more are available.

Contact Profile

Roy Morgan Research

Roy Morgan Research is Australia’s best known and longest established market research and public opinion survey company. Roy Morgan Single Source is thorough, accurate, and provides comprehensive, directly applicable information about current and future customers. It is unique in that it directs all the questions to each individual from a base survey sample of around 55,000 interviews in Australia and 15,000 interviews in New Zealand annually - the largest Single Source databases in the world. The questions asked relate to lifestyle and attitudes, media consumption habits (including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, cinema, catalogues, pay TV and the Internet), brand and product usage, purchase intentions, retail visitations, service provider preferences, financial information and recreation and leisure activities. This lead product is supported by a nationally networked, consultancy-orientated market research capability.
Shaun Ellis
P: 03 9224 5332


Smoking common with Americans suffering from Lung and Breathing illnesses



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