The 10 Most and Least Healthy States
The United Health Foundation has once again released its list of the 10 Healthiest States. Each year, the UHF ranks each of the 50 states based on a number of different variables.
From #10 to #1, if you live in Nebraska, North Carolina, Colorado, New Hampshire, Minnesota, Utah, Connecticut, Massachusettes, Vermont, or Hawaii, then congratulations — you live in one of the ten healthiest states of the union!
My state, Oklahoma, came in 46th. The bottom ten states, from #41 to #50, are: Indiana, South Carolina, Alabama, West Virginia, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Kentucky, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Mississippi.
According to the article: “Ranking 46th, the Sooner State has a high prevalence of physical inactivity, low immunization coverage among children, and a limited availability of primary care physicians. Since 1990, violent crime has increased 12%, while the nationwide rate dropped 37% during the same time period.”
Or, as we like to say, “at least we’re not Mississippi!” The least healthy state in the country “ranked last on six measures: physical inactivity, rate of infectious disease, low birth weight, infant mortality, cardiovascular deaths, and premature deaths.”
What do these rankings mean to you as an individual? Not much, probably. Just because few people in your state eat right or exercise doesn’t mean you have to, too. Yes, there are trends by area that often correlate to income levels, but it doesn’t take any money to walk a lap around your neighborhood once a day.
I’m going to do my best to get Oklahoma up to 45th next year. Who’s with me?