You can be healthy anywhere if you set your mind to it, but some cities definitely make the lifestyle a whole lot easier to stick to. And based on a recent analysis of the top places in the United States for prioritizing your well-being, you might want to pack up and head West.
To synthesize its just-released research, WalletHub analyzed 40 key indicators of good health in 170 of the biggest cities across the country. After taking into consideration doctor-visit costs, fruit and veggie consumption (very important, clearly!), and the number of fitness clubs available, the healthiest—and least healthy—cities came in loud and clear.
The Western metropolises of San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Oregon, and San Diego topped the list.
The Western metropolises San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Oregon, and San Diego topped the list for their high overall scores for health care and their ranks in a number of healthy categories. The cities blew away the competition in the spheres of food (access to farmers’ markets, healthy restaurants, and specialty-food stores), fitness (number of adults who are physically active, fitness clubs, and recreational leagues), and green space (access to quality parks, hiking trails, and bike paths).
But, not all the healthy locales sit on the Pacific Ocean. Washington, DC, came in at 5th place, Burlington in 6th, New York City snagged 12th, and Minneapolis 14th. And as for the least healthy cities in the country, per the results? Look down south, literally: Brownsville, Texas, came in last place.
If you’re trying to adopt a healthier lifestyle but aren’t looking to pack up, move, and start fresh, just seek out the factors that won the healthy cities their title. Buy fresh produce, find places to hike that offer gorgeous views, and drink benefit-rich kombucha. And, finding the healthy beverage shouldn’t be a tall order, considering it is all the rage this year.
Head to one of these desert escapes in California for a restorative minimalist getaway. Or, find out why the residents in this California town might be living beyond 100 because of one diet choice.