Maryland is the home United States Naval Academy, the first school to open in the US (King Williams School in 1696), and the birthplace of legendary baseball player Babe Ruth. Speaking of baseball, Cal Ripken, Jr., who played for the Baltimore Orioles, holds the longest streak of consecutive MLB games with 2,632.
The Old Line state is also where the first dental school in the US was established (at the University of Maryland). The National Aquarium is located in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. The first successful person-piloted balloon launch also took place in Baltimore, and it was the first state to enact worker’s compensation laws (in 1902). The 47 operational state parks in Maryland cover 90,239 acres.
Though there is a lot to get excited about in Maryland, decreasing the obesity of the state’s population over the decade spanning 2012 to 2022 isn’t one of them. None of Maryland’s 24 counties maintained or lowered their populations’ obesity percentages. Check out the infographic to see how each county ranked against the rest of the state:
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[Related: Maryland’s Top 50 Cities for Fit Lifestyles]
Only two counties kept their obesity within a point of their 2012 percentages in 2022 — Dorchester and Howard. The former still has a very high obesity percentage overall at 37 percent, while the latter has the second-lowest obesity percentage of all 24 counties at 26 percent. The lowest as of 2022 belongs to Montgomery at 25 percent, though that number is up seven points since 2012.
Charles county increased its obesity percentage by 11 points, and Washington wasn’t far behind with a nine-point increase over the decade. Maryland could be considered a significantly obese state as more than one in four people living in the state on average would be considered obese in 2022. Somerset, Caroline, and Charles are the three counties with more than 40 percent of their respective populations being obese. However, a handful of states are within a few points of joining that club, including Washington, Allegany, Baltimore, and Wicomico.
When comparing percentage changes over the decade to the state’s average obesity, Somerset and Charles fared the worse with 12-point spikes. Montgomery and Howard ranked best with seven and six-point drops, respectively, though both counties’ obesity percentages have increased since 2012.
Featured image via Shutterstock/Sean Pavone