The Partnership for Prevention, the United Health Foundation, and American Public Health Association have been gathering health habit data, state by state, for more than 25 years.
Their research reveals the strengths and as weaknesses of the country's overall health profile.
According to the most recent America's Health Rankings report, the top 10 healthiest states are the following:
7) New Hampshire
9) North Dakota
For the last two years, the state of Hawaii has won the top spot as the healthiest state. Hawaii has a low prevalence of obesity, a low rate of cancer deaths, and a low rate of preventable hospitalizations.
According to the Huffington Post, "over the past two years, [Hawaii] has decreased binge drinking by 15 percent among adults, as well as decreased smoking by 21 percent to 13.3 percent of adults, ranking them 3rd among all states for this criteria. As for the youth, child poverty has decreased by 39 percent over the past 25 years, but so has child immunization rates by 17 percent in the last year. Even the winner shows room for improvement: While they still have the lowest rate in the country, Hawaii's preventable hospital visit numbers increased by 13 percent in the last two years."
While Hawaii is the healthiest state, America has adopted some healthy preventative health practices. Here are a few of them:
• Adult smoking fell by 3 percent (currently 19 percent)
• Adolescent immunization rates increased 5 percent to 67.1 percent
• Americans have made significant progress in the way of avoiding premature
and cardiovascular deaths over the past 25 years
• Life expectancy is at its highest
• Infant mortality decreased by 4 percent throughout the last year, now sitting at 6 deaths per 1,000 live births
However, Americans continue to adopt some unhealthy practices. For example:
• The number of cases of pertussis (whooping cough) spiked to 15.5 per 100,000 population, up 154 percent from last year
• Adult obesity increased by 7 percent to hit 29.4 percent