The States With the Most Heart Disease

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20. Maine
> Adults with cardiovascular disease: 7.5%
> Adults who’ve had heart attack: 4.3% (tied, 11th highest)
> Population: 1,335,907

About 5.8% of adult residents in Maine have been told by a doctor they have had a heart attack, the sixth highest share of all states. Maine is also among the 10 states with the highest share of adults reporting coronary artery disease (damage to the major blood vessels) or heart attack. Another risk factor is depression, which has been linked to heart conditions. It brings about behaviors that contribute to cardiovascular disease such as sedentary lifestyle, smoking, drinking, and eating unhealthy foods. Maine has the second highest rate of adults being told they have some form of depression.

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19. Florida
> Adults with cardiovascular disease: 7.6%
> Adults who’ve had heart attack: 4.1% (tied, 14th highest)
> Population: 20,984,400

The adult smoking and obesity rates in Florida are just below the national rates, and the shares of adults reporting excessive drinking and not exercising are similar to national averages. The share of adult residents who do not have a doctor or a health care provider is high. At 28.0%, it is the ninth highest in the country. About 12.9% of adults do not have any health insurance. Uninsured people receive less care for conditions such as high blood pressure that can increase the risk of heart disease. The cost of health care can be too high if paid out of pocket.

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18. Michigan
> Adults with cardiovascular disease: 7.7%
> Adults who’ve had heart attack: 4.0% (tied, 17th highest)
> Population: 9,962,311

Michigan is among the states with the highest incidence of stroke, which occurs when blood vessels to the brain are clogged or burst. The high smoking and excessive drinking rates among adults in the state may also help explain the state’s high share of cardiovascular disease. So can the prevalence of high total cholesterol and hypertension — more than a third of adults residents live with either or both.

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17. Delaware
> Adults with cardiovascular disease: 7.7%
> Adults who’ve had heart attack: 4.0% (tied, 17th highest)
> Population: 961,939

Unhealthy behaviors such as lack of physical activity may be contributing to Delaware’s relatively high share of adults living with heart disease. In Delaware, 53.7% of adults don’t exercise enough in a week, compared to 49.8% of adults nationwide. About a third of people have not participated in any physical activities in over a month, more than the 25.7% of adults across the country. The high inactivity rate has likely contributed to the high incidence of high cholesterol and high blood pressure in the state, at sixth and fourth of all states, respectively.

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16. Pennsylvania
> Adults with cardiovascular disease: 7.8%
> Adults who’ve had heart attack: 4.1% (tied, 14th highest)
> Population: 12,805,537

Pennsylvania has the ninth highest share of adults who have been told by a doctor they have angina — severe chest pain as a result of restricted blood supply to the heart — or coronary heart disease, of which angina can be a symptom. The share of adults who were told they have had a stroke is also high at 3.8%, the 10th highest of all states and above the national share of 3.0%. Even though contributing factors to heart disease do not vary greatly from the average nationwide, heart disease is still the top killer in the state with more than 31,000 deaths in 2014.

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