SEATTLE -- Bellingham is one of the nation’s thinnest communities and Yakima among the most obese, according to a survey that lists Washington as the only state with cities ranked in the top five and the bottom five in the nation for obesity.
The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index released its data last week for 2012 and 2013. The Index is based on health surveys of adults in 189 metro areas, The Seattle Times reported Wednesday.
Fewer than 19 percent of adults in the Bellingham area reported a body mass index of 30 or higher, which is consider obese. That ranks Bellingham as having the fourth-lowest obesity rate among all metro areas in the study. The survey also found that 60 percent of Bellingham residents get regular exercise—sixth highest in the nation.
But in Yakima, 36 percent of adults are obese, according to their BMI—fourth-most obese in the nation. The Yakima area also has the third-highest rate of uninsured individuals (30 percent) and the fourth-highest rate of individuals who suffer from daily stress (65 percent), according to the study.
Among all metro areas surveyed, the lowest obesity rate (12 percent) is in Boulder, Colo., while Huntington, W.Va., has the highest rate (40 percent).
The Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue area ranks as the 10th-lowest among the 52 metro areas with a 23 percent obesity rate.
One city in the state ranked tops in the nation in healthful eating. Olympia is No. 1 with 66 percent of adults regularly including fruits and vegetables in their diet.