If you want to find a place to settle down, you could do worse than looking to this latest Gallup-Healthways report for direction [PDF]. Rather than ranking states by healthcare resources, economy, or workplace equality, the index looks at the overall well-being of each state’s residents.
Gallup surveyed over 175,000 Americans about several different criteria, such as their health, sense of purpose, sense of economic security, the quality of their relationships, and satisfaction with their home.
Hawaii ranks highest overall, with a well-being score of 65.2 out of 100 possible points. But that doesn’t necessarily mean tropical weather is the key to health and happiness: Alaska, South Dakota, and Maine occupy the next three spots. The report also includes the states with the lowest overall well-being rates. West Virginia takes last place with a score of 58.9, with Kentucky, Oklahoma, and Indiana faring only slightly better.
No matter where in the country you live, the 2016 Well-Being Index has good news for the U.S. as a whole. Overall well-being levels are at their highest since Gallup began administering the survey in 2008, with historically low smoking rates and record-high health insurance coverage. But not every area saw improvement: On the flip side, obesity, diabetes, and depression rates have also reached new heights.
[h/t CBS News]