The 10 unhealthiest American cities to live in, where residents are stressed, worried about money, and unsatisfied with their health

Detroit is the second-unhealthiest city of the 50 most populous cities in the US.

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Detroit is the second-unhealthiest city of the 50 most populous cities in the US.
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Getty Images/Feifei Cui-Paoluzzo
  • Mindbody, a wellness technology platform, released its annual Wellness Index ranking the healthiest and unhealthiest cities to live in 2020.
  • The company surveyed 20,000 adults in the 50 most populous US cities on their fitness and wellness habits, and also looked at data from the US Census and business listing services.
  • While Miami, Atlanta, and San Francisco topped the list of healthiest cities, places like Philadelphia and Detroit were at the bottom of the list.
  • The unhealthiest city in the US is Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where 39.6% of residents are stressed and 62% are sleep deprived.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

If you want to live in a city where locals are relatively healthy and report having low levels of stress, steer clear of places like Detroit, Philadelphia, and San Jose.

Mindbody, a wellness technology platform, ranked the healthiest and unhealthiest American cities to live in in its 2020 Wellness Index, based on factors including residents’ overall health, behaviors, attitudes towards wellness, and the success of local wellness businesses like gyms and spas. The researchers surveyed 20,000 adults in the 50 most populous US cities on their fitness and wellness habits, and analyzed health data and other data from sources including the US Census and business listing services.

Turns out, the unhealthiest city in the US is Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Residents here are more stressed and less satisfied with their health and fitness than in any other city in America.

Here are the 10 unhealthiest cities to live in 2020.


10. Phoenix, Arizona

Phoenix is one of the most stressed-out cities of the 50 most populous cities, with 42.6% of locals saying they’re stressed or extremely stressed.

Residents also have high levels of financial stress, with 54.3% saying they’re stressed about money.

Only 36.8% of Phoenix locals are satisfied with their overall health.


9. Memphis, Tennessee

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Getty Images/Dan Reynolds Photography

In Memphis, only 37.7% of residents are happy with their level of health. And 38.4% of locals report being either stressed or extremely stressed.

On top of that, half of Memphis residents say they’re stressed about money in particular.


8. Jacksonville, Florida

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Getty Images/benedek

Only 31.3% of Jacksonville residents are happy with their level of fitness, and barely 20% of locals work out regularly.

Almost 39% of locals report feeling stressed or extremely stressed.


7. San Jose, California

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San Jose is the third-most stressed city in the US, with 47.5% of locals reporting feeling stressed or extremely stressed.

When it comes to physical fitness, only 30.2% of San Jose residents are happy with their overall fitness level, and 22.1% say they work out regularly.


6. Indianapolis, Indiana

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Getty Images/Steve Taylor / EyeEm

Only 29.4% of people in the Indiana capital are satisfied with their fitness level, perhaps because only 16.3% of residents work out regularly (defined as at least five times per week).

And 38.1% of Indianapolis residents are stressed out, with 48.6% saying they’re stressed about their finances.


5. San Antonio, Texas

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Getty Images/David Kozlowski

San Antonio locals are the most financially stressed of the country’s unhealthiest cities, with more than half of residents reporting extreme financial stress.

Only 22.8% of the city’s residents say they eat at least five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day.

They’re also some of the least likely to go see the doctor, with only 44.2% reporting that they get annual medical checkups, as opposed to the 52% average among all 50 cities.


4. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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Getty Images/Yongyuan Dai

More than half of Philadelphians – 50.9% – are stressed about money.

A mere 17.5% of Philadelphia residents work out regularly, so it’s perhaps no surprise that only 38.1% are satisfied with their overall fitness level.


3. Mesa, Arizona

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In Mesa, the second Arizona city to make the unhealthiest cities list, only 22.5% of residents are satisfied with their overall fitness level. And a mere 35% are satisfied with their overall health.

The locals also feel a lot of stress, with 38.4% reporting that they’re stressed or extremely stressed.

And then there’s the lack of social health: Only 21.7% of Mesa residents said they feel connected to their neighborhood and community.

Less than half – 44.5% – of people in Mesa say they feel happy most of the time.


2. Detroit, Michigan

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f11photo/Shutterstock

Detroit has the highest percentage of cigarette smokers in the country, and it’s home to some of the most stressed people in the country, with 40.4% reporting feeling stressed or extremely stressed.

And much of that stress is money-related: More than half of residents – 52.1% – reported feeling financial stress.


1. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

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Shutterstock/Sean Pavone

Oklahoma City has the dubious honor of being the unhealthiest of the 50 most populous cities in the US. A meager 23.2% of residents eat the recommended daily serving of fruits and vegetables, and it’s the most sleep-deprived city of all the top cities, with only 38% of residents saying they regularly get a full night’s sleep.

Only 30.6% of residents of the Oklahoma capital are satisfied with their overall health.

That could be because only 48.3% of locals say they work out at least once a week. In sunny Miami on the other hand, which Mindbody ranked as the country’s healthiest city, 80% of residents work out at least once a week.

To top it all off, 39.6% of Oklahoma City’s residents report feeling stressed or extremely stressed.