The Most Obese County in Every State

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11. Hawaii
> Most obese county:
Kalawao
> County obesity rate: 23.8%
> Statewide obesity rate: 22.1%
> Pct. of adults who exercise regularly: 76.9%
> Share of adults reporting fair or poor health: 16.3%

With a 22.1% obesity rate, Hawaii is one of the most healthy states in the country. So while Kalawao County’s 23.8% obesity rate is the highest in the state, it is still lower than the 27.0% national obesity rate. County residents also report worse health outcomes than state residents, with 16.3% of county adults reporting fair to poor health compared to 13.2% of Hawaiian adults.

12. Idaho
> Most obese county:
Oneida
> County obesity rate: 35.9%
> Statewide obesity rate: 27.7%
> Pct. of adults who exercise regularly: 81.0%
> Share of adults reporting fair or poor health: 13.0%

Oneida County’s obesity rate of 35.9% is far higher than Idaho’s obesity rate of 27.7% and higher than any other county in the state. Unlike the most obese counties in most other states, Oneida County’s health outcomes are somewhat in line with Idaho as a whole. Both county and statewide adults report feeling physically unwell 3.6 days and mentally unwell for 3.5 days every month on average.

13. Illinois
> Most obese county:
Vermilion
> County obesity rate: 37.3%
> Statewide obesity rate: 27.4%
> Pct. of adults who exercise regularly: 73.4%
> Share of adults reporting fair or poor health: 16.2%

While the obesity rate across Illinois is roughly in line with the national rate, obesity is a much bigger problem in Vermilion County. More than 37% of Vermilion adults are obese, the largest share of any county in the state. Since the least healthy food is often the least expensive, a high level of food insecurity can contribute to a high obesity rate. In Vermilion, 17.1% of people are food insecure, higher than the state and national percentages.

14. Indiana
> Most obese county:
Jackson
> County obesity rate: 39.3%
> Statewide obesity rate: 31.4%
> Pct. of adults who exercise regularly: 70.0%
> Share of adults reporting fair or poor health: 16.4%

An especially high 39.3% obesity rate in Jackson County may partially explain the higher than average premature death rate in the county. Every year, 8,744 years of life are lost before age 75 due to preventable causes per 100,000 Jackson residents, considerably more than the corresponding statewide rate of 7,611 years of potential life lost.

15. Iowa
> Most obese county:
Fayette
> County obesity rate: 38.5%
> Statewide obesity rate: 30.7%
> Pct. of adults who exercise regularly: 70.6%
> Share of adults reporting fair or poor health: 11.9%

Fayette County’s 38.5% obesity rate is the highest of any Iowa county. Unlike the most obese counties in most other states, however, county adults report some healthier behaviors and outcomes than statewide residents. The 16.7% smoking rate and 19.2% excessive drinking rate in the county are both lower than their corresponding state rates. Also, a smaller share of adults in Fayette County report being in fair or poor health than across the state Iowa.