2024’s Healthiest Cities In The U.S.


When it comes to living your best life, location matters. Some cities go above and beyond to promote the well-being of their residents, whether it’s by ensuring access to nutritious food, providing ample recreational facilities, or keeping healthcare costs affordable. But in other places, maintaining good health can be an uphill battle. To that point, in its annual list of the healthiest cities in the U.S., WalletHub ranks San Francisco as the clear winner — a choice sure to stir some debate considering some of the far-from-healthy problems the city faces.

To uncover the cities that prioritize their residents’ health, WalletHub crunched the numbers on more than 180 of the most populated U.S. cities. They evaluated each city using 41 key indicators of good health, which were grouped into four main categories: Health Care, Food, Fitness, and Green Space. Researchers looked at everything from the cost of a doctor’s visit to how many people are eating their fruits and veggies to the number of physically active adults. The results? This is a fascinating snapshot of where in America the healthy life is most accessible.

By using such a diverse array of indicators and assigning them weights based on their relative importance, WalletHub aimed to create a comprehensive and balanced ranking of the healthiest cities in America. However, it’s important to note that no ranking system is perfect, and individual health outcomes can vary widely even within cities that rank highly on these metrics. Nonetheless, this study provides a useful starting point for understanding which urban environments are most conducive to leading a healthy lifestyle.

That’s why San Fran lands atop the others. Despite being mired in a homelessness and drug overdose crisis, the weighted list is based on health factors most easily available to citizens, along with the number of individuals who take advantage of them in each city. San Francisco, though 76th overall in health care ranking, was number one both in healthy food and green space availability. It also ranked 28th overall in fitness.

Similarly, Honolulu placed second overall in green spaces and fourth overall in food, while ranking 27th in fitness and 99th in healthcare. Seattle seemed a bit more balanced than San Francisco and Honolulu, placing fifth overall in fitness, 10th in food, 11th in green space, and 28th in healthcare.

Healthiest Places to Live in the U.S.

Overall Rank CityTotal Score Health Care Rank Food Rank Fitness Rank Green Space Rank 
1San Francisco, CA67.60761281
2Honolulu, HI64.28994272
3Seattle, WA63.682810511
4San Diego, CA63.08815136
5Washington, DC63.04397259
6Portland, OR62.65476318
7Denver, CO61.9929111916
8Salt Lake City, UT61.184218173
9Scottsdale, AZ60.321965113
10Irvine, CA60.2912301017
11Los Angeles, CA59.6110134120
12Minneapolis, MN59.4714324210
13Austin, TX59.432225623
14Huntington Beach, CA59.402433235
15South Burlington, VT58.522178365
16Boston, MA58.418124848
17Madison, WI58.391539829
18New York, NY58.1286211718
19Pittsburgh, PA57.7611204331
20Glendale, CA57.1753401512
21Atlanta, GA57.0110519436
22San Jose, CA56.6044137539
23Orlando, FL56.366122949
24Fremont, CA56.3440261654
25Portland, ME55.7032161374
26Oakland, CA55.369886457
27Tampa, FL55.2670281858
28Las Vegas, NV55.23155271225
29Burlington, VT54.834428641
30Garden Grove, CA54.797337745
31Raleigh, NC54.3417413124
32Long Beach, CA54.2962213463
33Missoula, MT54.2413994421
34Chicago, IL54.23107146245
35Sacramento, CA54.06135156333
36St. Louis, MO53.46139381147
37Boise, ID53.40251103519
38Overland Park, KS53.1111064590
39Cincinnati, OH53.06113562627
40Miami, FL53.059698977
41St. Paul, MN53.0141795326
42Grand Rapids, MI52.9627526144
43Rochester, NY52.69782911615
44Phoenix, AZ52.6592344751
45Oceanside, CA52.248058794
46Richmond, VA52.1336542395
47Tempe, AZ52.1260783932
48Philadelphia, PA52.04120236652
49Fort Lauderdale, FL51.9756447750
50Columbia, MD51.786697191
51Santa Clarita, CA51.7220489056
52Anaheim, CA51.3764355182
53Virginia Beach, VA51.363744699
54Plano, TX50.9826971484
55Bismarck, ND50.923510030100
56Louisville, KY50.7965668242
57Vancouver, WA50.6688722087
58Billings, MT50.32634368121
59Pembroke Pines, FL50.2743906738
60Sioux Falls, SD50.0878978112
61Yonkers, NY49.90373615043
62Santa Rosa, CA49.8897557259
63St. Petersburg, FL49.7594575467
64Albuquerque, NM49.591406410424
65Buffalo, NY49.4766479969
66Colorado Springs, CO49.3382883374
67Charlotte, NC49.19484921151
68Nashua, NH49.172310538137
69Tacoma, WA48.991127329104
70Providence, RI48.78598311928
71Lincoln, NE48.7251277080
72Spokane, WA48.7171715998
73Bridgeport, CT48.55551141207
74Juneau, AK48.551497614813
75Jersey City, NJ48.486731115108
76Manchester, NH48.47311176093
77Charleston, SC48.41911373126
78Aurora, CO48.28304692127
79Pearl City, HI48.04955911073
80Tucson, AZ47.69126618870
81Milwaukee, WI47.581048110561
82Omaha, NE47.511010765128
83Jacksonville, FL47.38119875278
84Nashville, TN47.33132519872
85West Valley City, UT47.271287011155
86Salem, OR47.17508012176
87Reno, NV47.12137759664
88Fargo, ND47.0833101108105
89Worcester, MA47.08511048588
90Santa Ana, CA46.861254511392
91Baltimore, MD46.741432413096
92Houston, TX46.661066332141
93Chula Vista, CA46.60856757135
94Dallas, TX46.511228637111
95Chandler, AZ46.39469622152
96Durham, NC46.17215087168
97Cedar Rapids, IA46.081814969115
98Warwick, RI45.953492128122
99Oxnard, CA45.911236813453
100New Orleans, LA45.581691239734
101Chesapeake, VA45.541611912989
102Lexington-Fayette, KY45.384977118134
103Modesto, CA45.27151989568
104San Antonio, TX45.211601124083
105New Haven, CT45.18879315930
106Mesa, AZ44.991029555130
107Riverside, CA44.901489149106
108Henderson, NV44.9012713610062
109Fort Worth, TX44.746912536143
110Columbus, OH44.738384106131
111Springfield, MO44.711141477675
112Aurora, IL44.149110915222
113Wilmington, DE44.12528517840
114Kansas City, MO43.9477121101113
115Rancho Cucamonga, CA43.9211513858101
116Nampa, ID43.8712413950117
117Glendale, AZ43.8411711184107
118Anchorage, AK43.7516510215737
119Peoria, AZ43.687212012797
120Des Moines, IA43.1858122126118
121Gilbert, AZ43.187510324178
122Columbia, SC43.184514381165
123Little Rock, AR42.996814891140
124Indianapolis, IN42.931309479150
125Rapid City, SD42.7538126144139
126Cleveland, OH42.6111653158120
127Newport News, VA42.057414114281
128Casper, WY42.0213315114385
129Knoxville, TN41.98136115107147
130Port St. Lucie, FL41.80100116114167
131Dover, DE41.4690152122161
132Akron, OH41.378916013971
133Tulsa, OK41.3310315980136
134Tallahassee, FL41.3379165103129
135Lubbock, TX40.7812917656132
136Cheyenne, WY40.6657171155144
137Ontario, CA40.3116713314146
138Norfolk, VA40.0454128138154
139Fresno, CA40.0316182147142
140Stockton, CA39.9917210815386
141Birmingham, AL39.87121157112138
142Oklahoma City, OK39.8393131136146
143Arlington, TX39.5711015493155
144Grand Prairie, TX39.5411115516560
145Chattanooga, TN39.3713117012466
146Cape Coral, FL39.01134153125159
147El Paso, TX38.76168124154109
148Irving, TX38.7514513494163
149Huntsville, AL38.70109167123170
150Newark, NJ38.6416662175149
151Moreno Valley, CA38.52150129164119
152Hialeah, FL38.5014260169162
153Garland, TX38.28153145149114
154Bakersfield, CA37.88170130151125
155San Bernardino, CA37.6917713716079
156Fort Wayne, IN37.60147142102171
157Fontana, CA37.54163135156123
158Lewiston, ME37.52152140171110
159Charleston, WV37.06144132146176
160Mobile, AL36.88158150132177
161Greensboro, NC36.76118144135175
162Wichita, KS36.54141169109164
163Baton Rouge, LA36.26159173131133
164Toledo, OH36.15171163161103
165Las Cruces, NM35.6784179174145
166Amarillo, TX35.55164164170116
167North Las Vegas, NV35.34173158179102
168Montgomery, AL34.63157175133181
169Jackson, MS34.46138161167169
170Memphis, TN34.11178168145148
171Winston-Salem, NC33.84108172140182
172Fort Smith, AR33.61154156177173
173Huntington, WV33.38176146172156
174Detroit, MI32.98179118180157
175Corpus Christi, TX32.81174162162166
176Fayetteville, NC32.78146177166172
177Augusta, GA32.71156166173174
178Shreveport, LA30.57162181176160
179Columbus, GA29.76182174163158
180Laredo, TX29.67181180181153
181Gulfport, MS29.13175178168180
182Brownsville, TX24.36180182182179

Note: With the exception of “Total Score,” all of the columns in the table above depict the relative rank of that city, where a rank of 1 represents the best conditions for that metric category.

Standout Cities

Now, just because some cities placed lower on the overall list doesn’t mean they don’t have standout qualities. Here are some interesting points that the researchers discovered in their data.

Let’s start with one of the most crucial factors: healthcare affordability. In Laredo, Texas, the cost of a medical visit is three times lower than in Juneau, Alaska. That’s a huge difference that can make or break someone’s ability to get the care they need. St. Louis, Kansas City, and Brownsville, Texas also stood out for their low healthcare costs.

But it’s not just about affordable doctor’s visits – having enough mental health support matters too. If you’re looking for easy access to mental health counselors, Spokane, Washington, and Colorado Springs are tied as the top places to be, with 12 times more counselors per capita than Laredo, Texas, despite the city’s aforementioned affordability. Rapid City, South Dakota, and Richmond, Virginia also scored high in this category.

Of course, preventative care is key to staying healthy, and that starts with what we put on our plates. Portland, Maine takes the cake (or should we say the carrot?) for the lowest percentage of adults not eating enough fruits and veggies per day. San Francisco, Oakland, and Fremont, California are also crushing it in the healthy eating department. On the flip side, southern cities like Memphis, Chattanooga, and Baton Rouge could use some work in getting their greens.

Healthiest Cities In The U.S.: Food Standouts

Along with what you eat, where you can eat healthy matters too. Portland, Oregon tops the list for the most healthy restaurants per capita, followed closely by New York City, San Francisco, Atlanta, and Los Angeles. Meanwhile, if you’re looking for a dietitian or nutritionist to help you stay on track, Durham, North Carolina, Lexington-Fayette, Kentucky, Billings, Montana, San Jose, California, and Madison, Wisconsin have the highest number of these professionals per capita.

Staying active is another crucial component of health, and some cities make it easier than others. If you want to break a sweat without breaking the bank, Lubbock, Texas has the lowest average monthly cost of a fitness club membership – nine times lower than in New York City. Glendale, Arizona, Bismarck, North Dakota, Columbus, Georgia, and Montgomery, Alabama also offer budget-friendly fitness options.

Healthiest Cities In U.S. Standouts

But the real superstars of physical activity? Look no further than South Burlington, Vermont, where the percentage of physically active adults is twice as high as in Hialeah, Florida. Irvine, California, Seattle, Washington, Huntington Beach, California, and Scottsdale, Arizona are also filled with folks who know the value of getting their heart rate up. 

Still don’t get how the researchers came to their conclusions? Here’s a more in-depth breakdown of WalletHub methodology:

  1. Each of the 41 indicators was assigned a specific weight based on its perceived importance in promoting overall health and well-being. For example, the premature death rate was given a triple weight, while metrics like the number of farmer’s markets per capita were given a full weight.
  2. The researchers gathered data for each metric from a variety of reputable sources, including the U.S. Census Bureau, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, County Health Rankings, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, among others.
  3. Each metric was graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the most favorable conditions for a healthy lifestyle.
  4. For metrics marked with an asterisk (*), the data was only available at the state level. For metrics marked with two asterisks (**), the researchers calculated the population size using the square root of the population to avoid overcompensating for minor differences across cities.
  5. After determining each city’s weighted average across all metrics, WalletHub used the resulting scores to rank-order the cities from most to least healthy.

Within each of the four categories, certain indicators were given additional weight:

  • In the Health Care dimension, the premature death rate was given a triple weight, while other metrics like the cost of a doctor’s visit or the number of mental health counselors per capita were given full weight.
  • Under the Food dimension, inadequate fruit and vegetable consumption was assigned a double weight, while factors like the number of healthy restaurants per capita were given a full weight.
  • For Fitness, the share of adults who engage in any physical activity was given a double weight, while metrics like the average cost of a fitness club membership were assigned a full weight.
  • In the Green Space category, all indicators – such as acres of parkland per capita, hiking trails per capita, and a city’s “greenness” – were given equal weights.

So what’s the takeaway? Where you call home can have a real impact on how easy it is to live a healthy life. No matter where you hang your hat, however, making your well-being a priority – whether that’s through regular check-ups, loading up on veggies, moving your body, or taking care of your mental health – is always a worthwhile investment. And who knows? Maybe your city will top the charts next year as America’s healthiest hometown.

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