WASHINGTON, April 14 (UPI) -- Residents of Boulder, Colo., are the least likely to be obese and those of McAllen-Edinburg-Mission in Texas are most likely, a survey of U.S. cities indicates.
The Gallup and Healthways Well-Being Index found that nationwide, 26.2 percent of Americans age 18 and older were obese in 2012, virtually unchanged from 26.1 percent in 2011. Of the 189 reportable metro areas surveyed in 2012, 102 had obesity rates lower than the national average.
The rate was 12.5 percent in Boulder and 38.5 percent in McAllen-Edinburg-Mission.
Following McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, the metro areas with the highest obesity rates for three years in a row starting in 2010 were Beaumont-Port Arthur, Texas; Reading, Pa.; and the Huntington, W.Va.,-Ashland, Ky.-Ironton, Ohio, tri-state region.
Besides Boulder, the leanest communities during the three-year period include Fort Collins-Loveland, Colo.; Naples-Marco Island, Fla.; and San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, Calif.
Nineteen of the 25 most populous metro areas surveyed had obesity rates lower than the national average.
Residents in the areas with the highest obesity rates were also 8 percentage points less likely than are those in the areas where obesity is lowest to have enough money to be able to buy food at all times and 6.5 points less likely to have enough money for healthcare and medicine.
Surveys of 248,538 U.S. adults, age 18 and older, who self-reported height and weight, were used to calculate Body Mass Index scores from the nation's top metropolitan areas.
Telephone interviews for the survey were conducted daily from Jan. 1-Dec. 31, 2012. The survey has a margin of error of 1 percentage points.