These 2 U.S. Cities Were Just Named Among the Unhealthiest on the Planet
Only two cities fared worse on the list of least healthy cities in the world.
There are many factors that come into play when choosing where to put down roots: professional opportunity, family ties, and cost of living, to name just a few. But beyond those more traditional considerations is one that's a bit harder to quantify, yet tells you a lot about a city: its health index. Unfortunately, you might not like what you learn.
A new Healthy Lifestyle Cities Report scored 44 international cities across 10 healthy living metrics and found that two popular American cities recently received a failing grade: Washington D.C. and New York City. Read on to learn why these cities ranked near last, and for more insights from around the country, check out This Is the Most Dangerous State in America.
First, let's set the record straight, in defense of two of our nation's great cities: the survey assessed just six major metropolitan areas in America, sparing plenty of cities from consideration. And while the list was somewhat comprehensive in its metrics for evaluation—including life expectancy, pollution rates, average hours worked, hours of sunshine, obesity rates, and self-reported happiness—there were important metrics left out, such as rate of chronic health conditions, cost of healthcare, as well as air and water quality.
That being said, the list does serve to highlight some areas where Washington D.C. and New York fall short when it comes to health and wellness. Ranked 41st and 42nd out of 44 cities around the world, respectively, there's certainly room for growth.
While New York City fared better for having more outdoor activities, it also had higher rates of pollution and more than four times the number of takeout restaurants compared with Washington, D.C. Both had astronomical pricing for a monthly gym membership—$91 and $92.50 for New York and D.C., respectively.
Meanwhile, the healthier end of the list was populated almost entirely with European cities, with one Australian city cracking the top five: Amsterdam, Sydney, Vienna, Stockholm, and Copenhagen made up the top five spots for their clean air, low obesity rates, high self-reported happiness, and more. Wondering how other U.S. cities fared in the rankings? Read on to discover which American city was the healthiest, and to find out which state you might be better off avoiding, This Is the Most Hateful State in America.
Annual Hours of Sunshine: 3,062
Pollution Index: 47.36
Takeout Restaurants: 1,031
And for the latest news delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
Annual Hours of Sunshine: 2,508
Pollution Index: 43.33
Takeout Restaurants: 1,320
Annual Hours of Sunshine: 2,634
Pollution Index: 27.03
Takeout Restaurants: 588
And for more shocking insights about our nation's cities, check out This Is the Most Hated City in America.
Annual Hours of Sunshine: 3,254
Pollution Index: 66.07
Takeout Restaurants: 1,439
And for more cities that earn poor health grades, This Is the Most Out-Of-Shape City in the U.S.