A new report from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington finds that in 2011, in a nation-wide study of counties, the lowest levels of obesity in men were found in San Francisco and New York. The New York Daily News crows, "Manhattan men nation's 2nd-skinniest." Meggings for everyone!
Wondering what SF and NY have in common? One could argue that both towns have a lot of walking and biking. Of course, it is possible to be fat and fit. But the Daily News points out:
Men in Manhattan tend to be more affluent, better educated and success-driven — all factors that help tip the scales toward not tipping the scales…
Surely the same could be said about SF and the Silicon Valley; a wealth map shows that like New York, SF has higher household incomes than a lot of the country.
The highest percentages of obesity for men were found in Kentucky, Mississippi, Louisiana, Ohio and Texas. For women, Falls Church City, VA and Pitkin, CO had the lowest percentages of obesity; four of the ten counties with the highest percentages of obesity were in Mississippi. Check out the wealth map — or this list of low-income counties — and you'll find that yes, some of the most obese places are also the poorest.
The study includes an interactive map that shows how obesity rates, life expectancy rates and physical activity rates have changed since 2001… And it also features the following sentence:
As physical activity increased between 2001 and 2009, so did the percentage of the population considered obese.
What do you think that means?
Image via Ellegant/Shutterstock.