Baltimoreans Are Not Healthy, But at Least We Have Pools and Parks, Study Says

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Baltimore has 24.6 farmers' markets per 1,000,000 residents, more than twice the national average.
Baltimore has 24.6 farmers’ markets per 1,000,000 residents, more than twice the national average.

We’ve just gone ahead and curved the results of the American College of Sports and Medicine’s “American fitness index.” Even with a generous 21.8 points added (because Minneapolis-St. Paul, the fittest city in the country, scored just 78.2 out of 100 possible points), Baltimore scores an underwhelming 81.3, or a B-minus. The upside? We’re much, much healthier than Detroit!

The study looked at access to fitness facilities, parks, health care, prevalence of chronic disease, and preventative health behaviors. According to the report, Baltimore has more per capita farmers’ markets, baseball diamonds, swimming pools, and rec centers than other cities of comparable size. Those are all good things. The not-so-good:  Baltimoreans have higher rates of obesity, asthma, diabetes, and heart disease (and fewer dog parks!). And despite the fact that we have more park units per capita than average, we spend way less money on our green spaces — only about $56 per resident (compared to Minneapolis’ $227!). But hey, at least we can go lounge in the pool as we contemplate our immanent mortality.



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2 COMMENTS

  1. Baltimore City and County recreational fields are woefully scarce and inadequate. Montgomery County and rural counties like Frederick and Harford must have skewed the numbers in the state’s favor.

    • It was a survey of metro areas — so Baltimore & Towson get roped together, but Frederick/Montgomery/etc. wouldn’t count to the total. I’m guessing that huge parks with large undeveloped, wooded areas (like Leakin) boosted our numbers

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