Special Report

The Healthiest City in Every State

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6. Colorado: Boulder
> Premature death rate (per 100,000): 210.5 (state: 285.2)
> Adult obesity rate: 14.9% (state: 21.0%)
> Rate of uninsured people under 65: 7.2% (state: 8.6%)
> Median household income: $80,834 (state: $69,117)

Boulder ranks not just as one of the healthiest metro areas in Colorado, but also in the U.S. as a whole. Just 9.4% of adults in the metro area report being in fair or poor health, the lowest share of any metro area nationwide, and well below the U.S. share of 16.0%.

Boulder also has the second lowest obesity rate among U.S. metro areas, with just 14.9% of adults reporting a body mass index greater or equal to 30. Obesity is one of the most direct indicators of good health behavior and outcomes.

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7. Connecticut: Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk
> Premature death rate (per 100,000): 220.8 (state: 273.8)
> Adult obesity rate: 21.6% (state: 25.5%)
> Rate of uninsured people under 65: 7.9% (state: 5.8%)
> Median household income: $91,198 (state: $74,168)

Of the four metro areas in Connecticut, Bridgeport ranks as the healthiest. It is the only metro area in the state where adults report an average of fewer than three days when they are physically unwell per month. Adults in Bridgeport are also less likely to smoke or be obese and more likely to exercise regularly than those living in any other metro area in the state.

Those with higher income often have better access to health care and can afford a greater range of healthy options related to diet and lifestyle, and they often report higher health status as a result. In the Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk metro area, the typical household earns $91,198, well above the median household income of $74,168 across the state as a whole.

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8. Delaware: Dover
> Premature death rate (per 100,000): 393.0 (state: 357.3)
> Adult obesity rate: 33.8% (state: 30.6%)
> Rate of uninsured people under 65: 7.6% (state: 6.7%)
> Median household income: $57,608 (state: $62,852)

Dover is the only metro area in Delaware and ranks as the healthiest city by default. By several important measures, however, the capital city is less healthy than the state as a whole. For example, only about 70% of metro area adults exercise regularly compared to about 75% of adults across the state. Regular physical activity can help in maintaining a healhty weight, and in Dover, 33.8% of adults are obese, a larger share than the state obesity rate of 30.6%.

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9. Florida: Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island
> Premature death rate (per 100,000): 223.7 (state: 340.9)
> Adult obesity rate: 21.4% (state: 26.5%)
> Rate of uninsured people under 65: 21.6% (state: 15.4%)
> Median household income: $66,048 (state: $52,594)

Just 15.8% of adults in the Naples metro area report being in fair or poor health, a far smaller share than the 18.5% of adults across Florida as a whole. The better than average health outcome is likely due in part to healthier lifestyles. For example, just 15.0% of adults in Naples drink excessively compared to 17.5% of adults statewide. Similarly, adults in Naples are less likely to smoke and more likely to exercise than the typical adult in Florida.

Obesity is a risk factor for a number of serious and potentially fatal diseases and conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers. The obesity rate in Naples of 21.4% is below both the state obesity rate of 26.5%, and the national rate of 28.5%.

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10. Georgia: Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell
> Premature death rate (per 100,000): 343.3 (state: 380.5)
> Adult obesity rate: 28.8% (state: 30.3%)
> Rate of uninsured people under 65: 14.4% (state: 14.9%)
> Median household income: $65,381 (state: $56,183)

Atlanta is not only the largest metro area in Georgia by far — it accounts for more than half of the state’s population — but it is also the healthiest. The metro area has the fewest average days of reported poor mental health per month among adults. It also is the only metro area in Georgia where the average reported number of days per month of poor physical health is below the national average. Atlanta’s premature age-adjusted mortality rate of 343 deaths before age 75 for every 100,000 people is lower than the state rate of 381 per 100,000.

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