Deaths from cancer, heart disease and stroke have continued to fall in Scotland, a new report shows.
However, lifestyle choices are still creating a huge burden on the country’s healthcare system, according to Scotland’s chief medical officer Dr Harry Burns.
He said obesity, poor diet and excessive drinking were continuing to cause “unacceptable” levels of ill health.
Government action in recent years has reduced the rate of avoidable health problems such as smoking-related illnesses, Dr Burns said.
But Scotland continues to have worse health problems than most other countries in Europe, his report suggests.
The country is thought to have the eighth highest alcohol consumption rate in the world, and figures suggest that a quarter of its population eat poorly, drink too much, do no get enough exercise and are overweight.
More must be done to tackle the issue, Dr Burns said in his annual report.
He said: “Obesity, poor diet and excessive alcohol consumption continue to be a cause of unacceptable levels of ill health which are inequitably distributed across society.”