Chronic Disease

The Population Health and Disease Prevention Division is dedicated to providing you with evidence-based information, practical tips, and resources to help you  take proactive steps towards reducing your risk of developing chronic diseases. We believe that prevention is the key to a healthier future and as such, we are committed to empowering you with the knowledge and tools to lead a healthy and fulfilling life. Take control of your health today by adopting healthier habits.

What is Chronic Disease?

Chronic disease is a long-term medical condition that persists over an extended period of time. Chronic diseases develop slowly and often require ongoing medical management, lifestyle adjustments, and monitoring.

Common examples of chronic diseases include:

  1. Heart Disease: Conditions such as coronary artery disease, congestive heart failure, and hypertension fall under this category.

  2. Diabetes: Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes are chronic diseases that affect the body's ability to regulate blood sugar levels.

  3. Chronic Respiratory Diseases: These include conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, and pulmonary fibrosis.

  4. Cancer: Many forms of cancer are considered chronic diseases, requiring long-term treatment and management.

  5. Arthritis: Conditions like osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis cause joint inflammation and pain over an extended period.

  6. Chronic Kidney Disease: Progressive damage to the kidneys over time can lead to chronic kidney disease, which may eventually require dialysis or transplantation

  7. Autoimmune Diseases: Conditions such as lupus, Crohn's disease, and psoriasis involve the immune system attacking healthy tissues, leading to chronic inflammation.

  8. Obesity: Excess body weight can lead to various chronic health issues, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and joint problems.

  9. Alzheimer’s: This chronic condition causes memory loss and impacts your ability to think. Once developed, brain cells will break down over time.

Lifestyle modifications, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, stress management, and proper medication adherence, often play a critical role in managing these conditions.

Preventive measures, such as maintaining a healthy lifestyle, getting regular check-ups, and avoiding risk factors (like smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and unhealthy diets), can significantly reduce the likelihood of developing chronic diseases.

How Can I Reduce My Risk of Developing Breast Cancer? 

  1. Maintain A Healthy Weight
  2. #RethinkYourDrink and Make Water Your Default Beverage
  3. Learn Your Family History & Ask Your Doctor How to #CheckYourSelf

Take Charge of Tomorrow | Diabetes Prevention

According to the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control, roughly 13.6% of adults over 18 in Orleans have been diagnosed with diabetes, higher than the 11.3% mational average (CDC, 2023). 

Diabetes occurs when blood sugar levels are too high, which can damage the eyes, kidneys, nerves, heart and is linked to certain cancers (NIDKK, 2023). The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) urges us to take charge of tomorrow by developing healthy lifestyle habits such as these today:

To learn how MyHealthfinder can help you prevent diabetes, click here.

Geaux #GetMoving!

#GetMoving encourages residents to adopt healthier lifestyles and meet the movement recommendations established by the Physical Activities Guidelines for Americans. ​

Learn more about the long term effects of physical inactvity and the #GetMoving challenge by visiting our Get Moving Resource Page.

Food is Medicine

Diet plays a vital role in our overall health and well-being. Consuming excessive sugary processed foods and and unhealthy fats weakens our immune system, leaving our body vulnerable to infections and disease. 

The City's Healthy Kids Beverage Ordinance was developed to encourage our youth to adopt healthier decision making habits when eating outside of home. With this policy, the City encourages restaurants to join the fight in preventing childhood diabetes and creates a community that supports a healthier lifestyle. To learn more about this effort, visit

To learn more about maintaining a healthy diet, check out our Nutrition Education Resource page.

In need of food assistance? The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) supports individuals and families facing food insecurity by providing benefits to purchase foods. Check out this How To Apply Guide from DCFS and get connected with your local SNAP advisor to complete your application.