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CDC lists top causes of death

The Centers for Disease Control released its annual ranking of what kills Americans, which is grim reading at best, and the No. 1 killer  -- again -- is heart disease.

Because of the time it takes to compile data from all over the country, it should be noted that heart disease was the No. 1 killer in 2007, so it's possible, although not likely, we're taking better care of our hearts. Cancer was No. 2, and between them, they accounted for about half of all deaths that year, as the did in 2006.

The Top 10 actually didn't change much, although there are some interesting differences between men and women. For example, the No. 3 killer of men was accidents; women apparently are much more careful, because that was No. 6 for them, and only about half as many women died of accidents as men.

Men were also nearly four times more likely to commit suicide as women. Intentional self-harm was the No. 7 killer of men, but No. 15 for women. Alzheimer's disease, and its complications, claimed twice as many women as men; it was No. 5 for women but No. 10 for men.

The full report, which is grim but inciteful, can be found here.

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The Spokesman-Review's political team keeps a critical eye on local, state and national politics.