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Mind and Body

Healthiest cities for men and women: new rankings

Women in Raleigh, N.C. and men in Burlington, Vt. have reason to feel fit: those two cities ranked first in recent magazine polls of the "The Healthiest Cities for Women" and "The Healthiest Cities For Men", respectively.

Women's Health and Men's Health magazines evaluated and ranked 100 cities for their performance in more than 30 categories, including their obesity and breast cancer rates, how long inhabitants exercised, and how often they vested the doctor, according to the magazines.

Raleigh women stood out in terms of their dedication to health screening: 90 percent got their pap smears on the recommended schedule, and 81 percent of those over 40 kept up with their mammograms, according to Women's Health.

Rounding out the top five cities for women were: San Jose, Calif., Madison, Wisc., Boise City, Idaho and Burlington, Vt.

San Jose ranked second on the women's survey in terms of overall fitness, and this city had particularly low rates of death from respiratory disease, Women's Health says.

The top cites for men looked similar, with Madison, Wisc., Plano, Texas, San Jose, Calif and Boise, Idaho filling positions two through five. Madison had particularly low rates of heart-related diseases, and men in the city appeared to be avid basketball players, Men's Health says.

Several southern cities found themselves in the bottom rankings, including Memphis, Tenn. and Birmingham, Ala., which were ranked lowest for both men and women.

Southern states have particularly high rates of obesity, heart disease and cancer, Sascha de Gersdorff, of Women's Health magazine, told Reuters.

"But these are obviously averages and of course it is possible to be healthy there," Gersdorff said.

Pass it on:Raleigh and Burlington beat out 99 other cities to be declared "The Healthiest Cities" for women and men, according to Women's and Men's Health magazines.