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Rochester was named one of the  most obese large metro areas.

The Gallup-Healthways Wellbeing Index found 28.6 percent of Rochesterians are obese, compared to 25.7 percent for all people who live in metropolitan areas with a population of at least 1 million.

Nationwide, the obesity rate was 27.1 percent in 2013. Gallup reports:

“Rising obesity rates have significant health consequences for both individuals and communities of all sizes. Numerous social, environmental, economic, and individual factors may all contribute to physical inactivity and consumption of less healthy foods, two lifestyle behaviors linked to obesity,” says Janna Lacatell, Healthways Lifestyle Solutions Director. “In order to combat the trend and encourage individuals to make healthier choices, community-based policy and environmental approaches can, and should, be used.”

Rochester does much better on overall well-being, ranking in the top 50 of the nearly 200 metros surveyed. Rochester also had the best well-being score of all cities in New York State. Here’s how we measured:

  • 28.6 percent obese (25.7 percent average)
  • 50.5 percent exercise (52 percent average)
  • 60.3 percent eat produce frequently (57.9 percent average)
  • 19.9 percent smoke (20.1 percent average)
  • 57.9 have daily stress (59.1 percent average)
  • 7.7 uninsured (17 percent average)


Links of the Day:


– The Blind Side star Quinton Aaron kicked off US Airways flight to Rochester “for being too big.”

– Insulting offer? Rochester City School District turns down $500,000 for its teachers to be trained by charter school teachers.

– New York City charter schools have fewer children with special needs. Are we created a two-tiered system of education?

– Great post on what could happen to college sports in wake of NRLB ruling. Minor leagues?

– Under pressure, Walmart upgrades its policy for helping pregnant workers.

– The resignation of the head of Mozilla has sparked discussion of free speech and the social mob. Andrew Sullivan asks if he’s that different from the Clintons.

– I would buy this: Three-wheeled car costs just $6,800 and goes 672 miles on a tank of gas.

Remembering the old Scrantoms store at Midtown.

12 Responses to Rochester Among Most Obese Metros

  1. True. They all can’t be the leggy beauty-queen models that the news stations parade on their news shows, to the delight of their adoring viewes. ;-). Supply meets demand.

  2. April 5, 2014 at 1:41 pm dew4794 responds:

    Of course the grocery stores moved out of the hood years ago with micro-convenient stores filling in the gaps, mostly high price junk food and beer. Rochester is just now applauding a grocery store for downtown. Complaints are about drugs in the city but nothing about food pushed with huge amounts of salt, fat, and sugar. Just now the city is beginning to regulate those food stores. Let’s hope there is some help from the business community for a healthier Rochester too.

  3. April 5, 2014 at 4:11 pm theodore kumlander responds:

    what the school board finally said no to it’s new charter school masters?! this was the best move the board has made in years.

    regarding Vargas and malik we now know whose money is their pocket.

    regarding the Vargas no confidence vote. maybe everybody figured out that he is to vocal a supporter of charter schools that perhaps there was something in it for him.

  4. April 5, 2014 at 6:04 pm Mittens responds:

    I found another study a few years back that said otherwise. Rochester was something like the 70th most obese metro. Buffalo was around 12th.

  5. April 5, 2014 at 9:22 pm Tony Mittiga responds:

    Please stop caring so much about these national rankings! For starters, even in the most egalitarian places, say Sweden, some communities will be low ranked, and others high ranked. In regard to the fatty ranking, results could be misinterpreted just on demographics. I could be that Rochester is fatter because its residents are generally older, and at a time in life when extra weight is common, in contrast to the mostly West Coast, and Sun Belt, cities, with a higher proportion of young people, who are commonly thin.

    • April 6, 2014 at 9:19 am Rachel Barnhart responds:

      This s a well-known and respected survey. Not to be compared to with slideshare magazine link bait stuff.

  6. The link for the Elio is not working. I’ve been watching this with interest for about a year now. If they actually build them and are around next time I need a car it will be at the top of my short list if they are available locally and not total crap. Despite the potential right now it is just another Tucker. Hope to see them on the road soon.

  7. April 6, 2014 at 9:03 am billd responds:

    Being a bigot isn’t good for business; some businesses more than others. It should be mentioned that three Mozilla board members quit when this guy was promoted to CEO so he appears to have other issues as well.

  8. April 7, 2014 at 7:52 am Animule responds:

    I suspect the obesity rating has a lot to do with the ethnic makeup of the city of Rochester. The higher the percentage of the population that is black, the higher the obesity rate. The reason is that not all cultures are the same, and black culture does not look upon being overweight or obese negatively, or as negatively, as white culture does. Here’s a quote on a 2012 MSNBC article on this very topic: “This confirms the anecdotal observation that African-American women do not stigmatize being overweight to the same degree as whites. Indeed, a body many in the mainstream might consider “fat” would be described as “thick” by black women, who tend to positively view their bodies regardless of size.”

    There is an assumption in the white community that obesity among blacks or Hispanics is driven by lack of access to “fresh foods” and that simply locating more supermarkets in urban locations will fix everything as will more “education” about making “healthy choices.” I really doubt that this is the case, or if this will fix things. The differences here are cultural, and cannot be fixed with a worldview imposed on these groups from the outside in. Article link, by the way: http://thegrio.com/2012/02/29/african-american-women-heavier-but-have-higher-self-esteem-than-white-counterparts/

  9. April 7, 2014 at 4:24 pm Ted Farley responds:

    Poor choices have more to do obesity than anything else. At the same time poverty plays a part because if you go to a grocery store you will notice it is considerably more expensive to eat healthy items. Convenience foods lead to obesity and other health issues.

    • April 8, 2014 at 10:09 am dew4794 responds:

      @ Ted Farley, go grocery shopping in the Hood once and just try to buy “a healthy diet.” Beer, soda-pop, fat, salt, and sugar in great quantities. The owners will tell you that produce is not a big seller. But it remains a chicken – egg issue.

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