American Prescription Drug use more than Doubles, Weed Still Illegal
More Americans take prescription medications than ever before – nearly 60% – and obesity could be to blame.
A new study published in JAMA shows that the number of people taking prescription drugs increased from 51% of the adult population in 1999 to 59% in 2011. Cholesterol and blood pressure drugs are the most-used medications in the U.S. 
Additionally, the number of people taking 5 or more prescriptions in a month has doubled to nearly 15%. 
“When we’re starting to see more and more adults using five or more drugs, it does raise a concern about the potential for drug interaction,” says Elizabeth Kantor, who is now an epidemiologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York and the lead researcher on the study.
Kantor explains that while the U.S. population is aging, that alone doesn’t account for the jump. Obesity has become a health crisis in America, so in addition to getting older, many people are suffering obesity-related diseases like heart disease, diabetes and other metabolic disorders.