We’re number 3!

For the second straight year, Minnesota ranks third among all of the states in the nation in overall health.

That’s according to America’s Health Rankings, which is sponsored by the United Health Foundation teaming up with the American Public Health Association and Partnership for Prevention.

This seems like good news until you realize that the healthiest state is Hawaii.

We get blizzards, subzero temperatures and torn-up roads. They get the weather of paradise AND they’re healthier than we are.

Wisconsin ranked 20th — just ahead of California. Mississippi ranked 50th.

A news release from the Minnesota Department of Health noted that the state leads everyone in a few categories. We have the fewest days of poor physical health, the fewest cardiovascular deaths per 100,000 people and the lowest number of years lost due to premature death per 100,000 people.

That last category is a mouthful, but it’s significant: We’re living longer than people in other states. This winter, it certainly feels longer.

So why doesn’t Minnesota rank first overall?

Because the state sits far down in some other categories, as the health department also points out. Minnesota is 47th in the percentage of adults engaging in binge drinking (Wisconsin is 50th), 37th for immunization coverage of children between ages 19 and 35 months, and 46th in per capita public health investment. The latter surprised me.

Here are the top ten healthiest states, according to America’s Health Rankings:

1. Hawaii

2. Vermont

3. Minnesota

4. Massachusetts

5. New Hampshire

6. Utah

7. Connecticut

8. Colorado

9. North Dakota

10. New Jersey

Your comments, news tips and observations welcome at: jlundy@duluthnews.com.

 

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