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Thin people live in Colorado.

OK, so there are thin people outside Colorado. But there must be something the Centennial State knows: According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Colorado has the highest percentage of people with a normal weight (meaning neither overweight nor obese) in the nation.

And why are there fewer fat Coloradans? “My take is that, traditionally, Colorado has attracted people who value outdoor living and health and wellness more,” says James O. Hill, Ph.D., director of the Center for Human Nutrition at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, in Denver, who has lived there for years. “People will take off every Friday because they go to the mountains. They’re willing to prioritize health and wellness.”

The state has the country’s largest system of city parks, more than 3 million acres of national parks and forests, 10 major ski resorts, and 400 mountain-biking trails. In addition, 20 percent of Coloradans belong to health clubs―the second-highest percentage in the United States. (Delaware has the highest.) Colorado’s weather also helps. Says Hill: “We have 300-plus days each year when it’s nice to be outside.”

 

This is the fifth post in a series of habits of thin people, drawn from a Real Simple magazine story written by ih8exercise founder Lorie Parch.

 

Photo by Marxchivist / Flickr