Top 4 Healthiest Cities in Asia 2019

This city tops the list of the healthiest cities in Asia. Do you recognize this famous pool?

How healthy and fit is your ASian city? An agency called Spotahome has used data from the WHO, OECD, CIA World Factbook, and others to compile a list of 89 cities across the world, ranking them from healthiest to unhealthiest based on how they fare on 10 criteria from “air and water quality” to “work-life balance”. The final score is calculated as an average of each of these factors.

Samir Becic 4 x Number 1 Fitness Trainer and author of ReSYNC Your Life and his Health Fitness Revolution team used the data mentioned above but removed three factors that we decided were less relevant to health: work-life balance (difficult to calculate), sunshine, and electric car charging stations. The factors we deemed highly tangible to better health are: life expectancy, gym rating, fast food outlets, obesity, vacation days, air and water quality, and green spaces.  We averaged the score of these 7 factors to compile the list of these Top 4 Healthiest Asian Cities.

With this article, we want to encourage other cities to be more physically fit and active in order to thrive in the modern world.  The wealth and prosperity of a nation are dependent on the health and physicality of its people. Without further ado, here are this year’s Top 4 Healthiest Cities in Asia:

4. Mangalore, India

Stairway to Someshwara beach near Mangalore , India. Mangalore is the fourth healthiest asian city in the world.
  • Gym Rating: 6.62
  • Life Expectancy: 2.33
  • Fast Food Outlets: 9.53
  • Obesity: 10
  • Vacation Days: 1.67
  • Air and Water Quality: 8.43
  • Green Space: 7.72

Mangalore ranked highest among the Asian countries in gym rating and the lowest obesity rate. People who live close to gyms, pools and playing fields weigh less and have smaller waistlines than their counterparts residing farther away from exercise facilities, a study suggests. Living far away from fast food outlets also appeared to help people maintain a lower weight and trimmer waist, although this connection wasn’t as strong as the proximity of gyms, researchers report in the Lancet Public Health. This could also be correlated as to why Mangalore has the lowest obesity rate of any country on this list.

3. Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo is the third healthiest city in Asia
  • Gym Rating: 3.9
  • Life Expectancy: 10
  • Fast Food Outlets: 8.69
  • Obesity: 8.56
  • Vacation Days: 3.83
  • Air and Water Quality: 5.78
  • Green Space: 5.65

Japan is a country where hundreds of residents are over 100 years old, and is often referred to as “the land of immortals.” In 2017, the number of people 90 years old and above in Japan hit the 2 million mark. Diet is one reason for the large number of “centenarians,” or people older than 100 years. When the Japanese eat meat, they eat mostly fish, rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Other popular foods include tofu, seaweed, and octopus, all of which carry a low risk for some cancers and arteriosclerosis

2. Seoul, South Korea

Seoul, South Korea is the second healthiest city in Asia
  • Gym Rating: 5.84
  • Life Expectancy: 8.54
  • Fast Food Outlets: 9.6
  • Obesity: 7.96
  • Vacation Days: 2.4
  • Air and Water Quality: 6.57
  • Green Space: 7.22

Seoul had the least amount of fast food outlets of any of the Asian cities on this list. It’s no surprise that fast food is bad for your health- this particular study even tested how proximity and access to fast food increases the risk of obesity. One possible explanation is that proximity to fast food reduces the costs of fast food, principally travel costs. A second explanation is that easier access to fast food tempts consumers who have self-control problems.

1. Singapore, Singapore

Singapore is the fittest city in Asia
  • Gym Rating: 6.49
  • Life Expectancy: 9.95
  • Fast Food Outlets: 9.44
  • Obesity: 7.67
  • Vacation Days: 0
  • Air and Water Quality: 7.34
  • Green Space: 8.38

Out of these asian cities, Singapore scored the highest in green spaces. Green urban areas facilitate physical activity and relaxation, and form a refuge from noise. Trees produce oxygen, and help filter out harmful air pollution, including airborne particulate matter. Green spaces also are important to mental health. Having access to green spaces can reduce health inequalities, improve well-being, and aid in treatment of mental illness. Some analysis suggests that physical activity in a natural environment can help remedy mild depression and reduce physiological stress indicators. Read our article on the health benefits of communing in nature.

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