Last week, we highlighted a scary county-by-county map that a commenter posted to #tips showing metastasizing unemployment growth. Today, it occurred to us that we’d seen a graphic like that somewhere before: A CDC map of obesity by county.
The left map is a snapshot of county-level unemployment rates from October 2008; darker counties have higher unemployment (the time-lapse map we grabbed it from goes to October 2009, at which point the whole country is basically black). At the right is a CDC map released last month of obesity rates in 2007—it’s the first county-level rendering of obesity data. (You can click the maps to see a larger version.)
With the exception of the West Coast, it looks as though Ground Zero of the employment crash aligned fairly faithfully with the Obesity Belt: Appalachia, Michigan, the Deep South and the Southeast Atlantic Coast all shared early unemployment spikes and higher rates of obesity, while Texas, the Upper Midwest, and the plains states are thinner and have better job security.
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