The 25 Healthiest Cities in America

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25. Portland-South Portland, ME
> Premature death rate:
274.6 (per 100,000 residents)
> Adult obesity rate: 24.1%
> Pct. adults without health insurance: 8.3%
> Median household income: $58,000

Only about one in every 10 adults in the Portland metro area report being in fair or poor health, the eighth smallest share of any U.S. metro area. Healthy behaviors likely contribute to the overall good health of area adults. Roughly 82% of adults lead physically active lives, one of the largest shares of any U.S. city. Certain unhealthy habits are also relatively rare as only 13.9% of area adults smoke, lower than the 17.0% nationwide smoking rate.

A healthy diet and lifestyle can often depend on financial stability. In Portland, only 11.2% of residents live in poverty, a considerably smaller share than the 15.6% nationwide poverty rate.

24. Lawrence, KS
> Premature death rate:
269.9 (per 100,000 residents)
> Adult obesity rate: 23.3%
> Pct. adults without health insurance: 9.2%
> Median household income: $50,732

Maintaining an active, healthy lifestyle can be contingent on opportunity. In Lawrence, Kansas, 91.3% of the population, one of the higher shares in the country, has adequate access to places for physical activity such as parks and recreation centers. It is not likely a coincidence therefore that about 81% of adults engage in physical activities on a regular basis, a larger share than the 77% of American adults who do.

Along with remaining active, a consistently healthy diet is also crucial to good physical health, and Lawrence residents are much less likely to struggle to afford regular meals than the typical American. Only 13.3% of area residents are food insecure, much lower than the 20.5% of Americans who are.

23. Ann Arbor, MI
> Premature death rate:
254.8 (per 100,000 residents)
> Adult obesity rate: 23.3%
> Pct. adults without health insurance: 5.7%
> Median household income: $60,805

Those with health insurance are more likely to receive regular medical checkups and preventative care than those without insurance. In Ann Arbor, more than 94% of adults are insured — one of the highest rates of any U.S. city. High coverage rates accompany a low premature death rate in the city. For every 100,000 metro area residents, roughly 255 die before age 75, considerably less than the 474 premature deaths per 100,000 residents nationwide.

22. State College, PA
> Premature death rate:
230.6 (per 100,000 residents)
> Adult obesity rate: 25.3%
> Pct. adults without health insurance: 5.7%
> Median household income: $50,295

Children born to teenage mothers are at far greater risk of certain serious health conditions, including anemia and high blood pressure. In State College, Pennsylvania, there are less than six teenage births per 1,000 metro area teenage girls, the lowest rate of any U.S. city.

In addition to, and perhaps at least partially because of the low teen birth rate, State College residents are among the least likely in the country to die before age 75. For every 100,000 metro area residents, there are 231 premature deaths, less than half the national rate of 474 premature deaths per 100,000 people.

21. Madison, WI
> Premature death rate:
259.2 (per 100,000 residents)
> Adult obesity rate: 23.9%
> Pct. adults without health insurance: 5.9%
> Median household income: $61,227

Life expectancy in Madison is about two and a half years longer than it is nationwide. Area residents can partially attribute their longevity to healthy lifestyles. More than 83% of adults in the area lead physically active lives, one of the largest shares in the country and considerably higher than the 77% share of American adults who are active. Along with being more active, area residents are less likely to have a smoking habit than most Americans. Only 13.7% of adults in the area smoke, a considerably smaller share than the 17.0% of American adults who do.