The Fattest Cities in the U.S. in 2019
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Being overweight or obese isn't just bad for your health, it's likely to cost you a fortune. Obese adults spend 42% more on direct healthcare costs than adults who are a healthy weight, according to The State of Obesity, an annual report on obesity in America.

Forty percent of Americans over age 15 are obese, and this epidemic continues to worsen, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Is location a factor? It seems so. There are things a community can do to reduce obesity, according to the OECD's report, such as ensuring the availability of healthy food retailers in underserved communities, meeting or exceeding federal nutrition standards for school meals, and increasing access to parks and recreational activities.

To find the fattest U.S. cities, personal finance site WalletHub compared 100 of the most populated U.S. metro areas across 19 key indicators of weight-related problems, ranking them in these three categories:

The obesity and overweight category is based on the share of overweight and obese adults, teens and children, as well as the area's projected obesity rates. (The CDC defines overweight as having a body mass index of 25 to 29. A BMI of 30 or higher is considered obese.)

The health consequences category considers the share of adults in the city with high cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease, as well as the obesity-related death rate. These are all health problems typically related to obesity.

Lastly, in the food and fitness category, each city is scored based on factors that include the share of adults with low fruit and vegetable consumption, access to healthy food, share of physically inactive adults, the city's friendliness toward an active lifestyle, and access to parks and recreation.

Based on WalletHub's study, these are the fattest cities in America in 2019:

Photo: Shutterstock

1. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, Texas
1. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, Texas

1. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, Texas

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 2 (out of 100)
  • Health Consequences Rank: 11 (out of 100)
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 1 (out of 100)

Topping the list of metros is McAllen, Texas. The McAllen metro has the third-highest rate of diabetes and the highest percentage of physically inactive adults of all 100 cities.

Photo: Anthony Acosta / Wikipedia

2. Shreveport-Bossier City, La.
2. Shreveport-Bossier City, La.

2. Shreveport-Bossier City, La.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 6
  • Health Consequences Rank: 3
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 3

The Shreveport metro has the highest percentage of adults who mostly skip eating fruits and vegetables - consuming them less than once a day. The metro ranks second for the highest percentage of adults with high cholesterol. Shreveport also ranks second for high percentage of adults with high blood pressure.

Photo: Shutterstock

3. Memphis, Tenn.
3. Memphis, Tenn.

3. Memphis, Tenn.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 1
  • Health Consequences Rank: 25
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 4

Memphis ranks fifth for highest percentage of obese adults.

Photo: csfotoimages/iStock

4. Jackson, Miss.
4. Jackson, Miss.

4. Jackson, Miss.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 14
  • Health Consequences Rank: 8
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 8

Photo: iStock

5. Mobile, Ala.
5. Mobile, Ala.

5. Mobile, Ala.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 19
  • Health Consequences Rank: 1
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 34

Mobile has the highest percentage of adults with high blood pressure.

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6. Tulsa, Okla.
6. Tulsa, Okla.

6. Tulsa, Okla.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 3
  • Health Consequences Rank: 27
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 13

Photo: Shutterstock

7. Knoxville, Tenn.
7. Knoxville, Tenn.

7. Knoxville, Tenn.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 10
  • Health Consequences Rank: 19
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 14

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8. Toledo, Ohio
8. Toledo, Ohio

8. Toledo, Ohio

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 18
  • Health Consequences Rank: 10
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 12

Toledo has the second highest percentage of obese adults.

Photo: Steve Lagreca / Shutterstock

9. Baton Rouge, La.
9. Baton Rouge, La.

9. Baton Rouge, La.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 23
  • Health Consequences Rank: 5
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 16

Baton Rouge is also in the top five for percentage of adults who have low consumption of fruits and vegetables.

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10. Augusta-Richmond County, Ga.-S.C.
10. Augusta-Richmond County, Ga.-S.C.

10. Augusta-Richmond County, Ga.-S.C.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 31
  • Health Consequences Rank: 4
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 7

Augusta has the fourth highest percentage of obese adults.

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11. Lafayette, La.
11. Lafayette, La.

11. Lafayette, La.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 21
  • Health Consequences Rank: 13
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 18

Lafayette is one of the five cities with the fewest active adults.

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12. Oklahoma City
12. Oklahoma City

12. Oklahoma City

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 7
  • Health Consequences Rank: 20
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 19

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13. Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, Ark.
13. Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, Ark.

13. Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, Ark.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 24
  • Health Consequences Rank: 18
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 10

Little Rock is also in the top five for percentage of adults who have low consumption of fruits and vegetables.

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14. Columbia, S.C.
14. Columbia, S.C.

14. Columbia, S.C.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 11
  • Health Consequences Rank: 32
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 9

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15. New Orleans-Metairie, La.
15. New Orleans-Metairie, La.

15. New Orleans-Metairie, La.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 13
  • Health Consequences Rank: 2
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 46

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16. Chattanooga, Tenn.-Ga.
16. Chattanooga, Tenn.-Ga.

16. Chattanooga, Tenn.-Ga.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 34
  • Health Consequences Rank: 6
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 11

Chattanooga is one of the five cities with the fewest active adults.

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17. Louisville/Jefferson County, Ky.- In.
17. Louisville/Jefferson County, Ky.- In.

17. Louisville/Jefferson County, Ky.- In.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 8
  • Health Consequences Rank: 16
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 31

Photo: Thomas Kelley / Shutterstock

18. Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro-Franklin, Tenn.
18. Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro-Franklin, Tenn.

18. Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro-Franklin, Tenn.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 4
  • Health Consequences Rank: 17
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 47

Photo: f11photo Shutterstock

19. San Antonio-New Braunfels, Texas
19. San Antonio-New Braunfels, Texas

19. San Antonio-New Braunfels, Texas

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 12
  • Health Consequences Rank: 21
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 25

Photo: f11photo Shutterstock

20. Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, S.C.-N.C.
20. Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, S.C.-N.C.

20. Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, S.C.-N.C.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 22
  • Health Consequences Rank: 22
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 22

Photo: Shutterstock

21. Canton-Massillon, Ohio
21. Canton-Massillon, Ohio

21. Canton-Massillon, Ohio

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 35
  • Health Consequences Rank: 7
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 32

Canton has a high percentage of diabetic adults, ranking fourth in the nation.

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22. Birmingham-Hoover, Ala.
22. Birmingham-Hoover, Ala.

22. Birmingham-Hoover, Ala.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 26
  • Health Consequences Rank: 14
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 20

Birmingham ranks third for highest percentage of obese adults.

Photo: Sean Pavone / Shutterstock

      Also see: The Best Cities to Enjoy an Active Lifestyle

23. Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, S.C.
23. Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, S.C.

23. Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, S.C.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 25
  • Health Consequences Rank: 39
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 2

Photo: Photo: Shutterstock

24. Lexington-Fayette, Ky.
24. Lexington-Fayette, Ky.

24. Lexington-Fayette, Ky.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 9
  • Health Consequences Rank: 36
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 29

Photo: Shutterstock

25. Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Mich.
25. Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Mich.

25. Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Mich.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 30
  • Health Consequences Rank: 12
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 30

Detroit ranks fifth for the highest percentage of adults with high cholesterol.

Photo: Byelikova Oksana / Shutterstock

26. Winston-Salem, N.C.
26. Winston-Salem, N.C.

26. Winston-Salem, N.C.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 49
  • Health Consequences Rank: 9
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 6

Winston-Salem ranks third for the highest percentage of adults with high cholesterol.

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27. Wichita, Kan.
27. Wichita, Kan.

27. Wichita, Kan.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 38
  • Health Consequences Rank: 24
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 5

Photo: Shutterstock

28. Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas
28. Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas

28. Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 16
  • Health Consequences Rank: 47
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 24

Photo: Shutterstock

29. El Paso, Texas
29. El Paso, Texas

29. El Paso, Texas

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 15
  • Health Consequences Rank: 56
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 15

El Paso has the highest percentage of diabetic adults of all of the cities. But on the flip side, El Paso also ranks among the five cities with the lowest percentage of adults with high cholesterol.

Photo: Shutterstock

30. Charleston-North Charleston, S.C.
30. Charleston-North Charleston, S.C.

30. Charleston-North Charleston, S.C.

  • Obesity/Overweight Rank: 20
  • Health Consequences Rank: 45
  • Food and Fitness Rank: 27

See the ranking of all 100 cities and the detailed methodology at WalletHub.

Photo: Shutterstock

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