5 Of The Healthiest And Greenest Cities In America

By  |  25 Comments

The following cities are known for being very health-conscious and conducive to a healthy lifestyle.  Whether you’re planning a vacation or a move, consider checking out any of these places if you’re looking to be surrounded by people who understand the importance of not just physical health, but also the health of the environment and how one affects the other.

1.  Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon

The city known as being the most green in the country was ranked number 4 in the Travel Channel’s list of America’s Top 20 Healthiest Cities in 2011.  This city has tons of health food stores, vegan restaurants, bike and running paths, trees and parklands.  It is regularly the originating location of news stories about bicycle-based home-moving companies, fitness gyms that generate electricity through manpower, and health statistics that would make anyone want to breathe the air in Portland.  Oregon itself has long been at the forefront of the environmental movement.  Portland fits into the state perfectly.  If you’re an eco-warrior who cares about your own health and the health of the planet, so will you in Portland.

 

2.  Missoula, Montana

Missoula, Montana

Missoula is a gem of a city hidden in the Bitterroot Valley region of Montana that has health food stores, an ever-growing population of vegans and amenities to satisfy them, and a solid population of permaculture proponents.  With the University of Montana being located in Missoula, the younger, hipper population is on the cutting edge of green technologies. Commuting by bicycle is very common in Missoula, and outside of the city limits are countless bike paths, hiking trails, and parks to keep the population fit, healthy, happy, and one with nature. If you’re looking for a small, healthy city surrounded by huge mountains, you have to look at Missoula.

 

3.  Salt Lake City, Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah

This city was ranked number 15 in the Travel Channel’s list of the top 20 healthiest cities in America in 2011.  Also, in 2012, it was reported that the city has an increasing vegan population which is in turn leading to more vegan and organic health food stores, restaurants, and other businesses catering to a green lifestyle sprouting up all throughout the city.

Outdoor recreation has always been readily available in the city through its renowned ski resorts, parks, hiking and biking trails, and scenic walking paths.  In the years to come, Salt Lake City is surely going to pick up speed with becoming one of the greenest, healthiest cities in America.

 

4.  Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado

This city was ranked number 5 by the Travel Channel in their list of America’s Top 20 Healthiest Cities in 2011.  Not only does Denver have tons of outdoor recreational activities available such as hiking, white water rafting, and mountain climbing, but this city also has a number of resources to make the natural environment healthier for humans and non-humans alike.  The Raptor Education Foundation is located in Denver and works to promote awareness of fragile ecosystems for birds such as bald eagles and hawks.  Denver air quality is remarkably good, and the city boasts a higher than average quality of life when it comes to income, physical fitness, health, and happiness.

 

5.  Asheville, North Carolina

Asheville, North Carolina

This beautiful mountain town is home to artists and professionals alike and is a mecca of both physical and spiritual health.  Yoga studios, herb shops, vegan restaurants and health food stores are commonplace in Asheville.  The air quality is superb, and the people who live in Asheville radiate a sort of stress-free attitude that is addictive.  The sunny weather here will have you glowing with health and happiness.

Share this Article
Share on Facebook9,066Tweet about this on Twitter226Share on Google+34Share on LinkedIn21Pin on Pinterest1,698Share on StumbleUpon59Share on Reddit0Email this to someone

Carrie Thompson covers health-related topics for ViJuvenate, a website dedicated to selling sustainable foods and supplements like organic cacao powder

  • http://beyondmeds.com Gianna

    sadly the air quality in Asheville is not what this article says. Respiratory illness in Asheville is ranked number 6.

    Otherwise, yes, Asheville is a lovely place to live.

    see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMXDRqSMsAM

    • http://www.facebook.com/claireashley83 Claire Hunn

      It’s better than the air in tons of other US cities..

    • http://www.facebook.com/prime.girl Kelly Prime

      I think you are referring to the respiratory illness in Asheville because of the high number of seasonal allergies that people get here. That is strictly caused by the biodiversity of the flora & fauna, and not by “un-green” contaminants. In Asheville there is a huge pollen count because of the growing seasons, and large number of trees and such that cause allergens. There are also a lot of people here who come to live and retire with lifelong respiratory illnesses because this area is known for its climate and health benefits for people who suffer from such illnesses.

      • http://twitter.com/BrownestWeener BrownestWeener

        pretty sure fauna aren’t affecting the air quality in asheville or anywhere else.

  • Reggie Thomas

    Amazing,5 cities out of 50 States,we really need to do a lot better than that.(O_O)

  • KH

    The air quality in Asheville is amongst the worst in the nation! All of the pollution from the Ohio River Valley filters through the Smoky and Appalachian Mountains….

    • http://www.facebook.com/claireashley83 Claire Hunn

      not true.

    • http://www.facebook.com/prime.girl Kelly Prime

      the air quality in Asheville is great because of the biodiversity of the mountains and surrounding forests. I do know of the pollution from the Ohio River Valley, and thank goodness none of it is in Asheville!

    • dan

      relax

  • Pingback: Bike Commuting: How to Save Money and Mother Earth - Greener Ideal

  • Pingback: #MyBlogGuest PUSH Thursday Summary

  • Pingback: Coming Soon: Eco-City In China - Greener Ideal

  • Pingback: Coming Soon: Eco-City In China | China News Center

  • gdfw

    MISSOULA SUMMER TIME IS THE BEST !!!! COME VIST SO MUCH TO DO!!!!

  • Pingback: Missoula Voted in Top 5 Healthiest and Greenest Cities in America

  • Happytotravel

    I’m wondering what this is based on as well? I live in Missoula and though beautiful, I definitely would not consider it in the top anything for healthy or green. We have terrible air quality in the winter with the inversion. There are no policies for recycling, although programs to encourage being green. Our city and county governments don’t recycle cardboard and don’t require other recycling. It is a great place to visit, but it has a way to go to be ranked in the top 5 of any green and healthy list.

  • MZ

    I would also like to add that having vegan restaurants and being vegan in no way = healthier.

    • veggiedog

      Actually, being vegan does = healthier in most cases.

      • Antifound

        Depends. Industrially produced soy burgers cannot be better than local pastured meat. See Vegetarian Myth.

      • Fact

        No, vegan is NOT greener. In fact is is exactly the opposite

  • BooYa

    I lived in Asheville for 6 years and let me say it is the best food city ever! There are so many amazing, unpretentious restaurants. However, the air quality is NOT superb, but it is an amazing place nonetheless. I now live in Denver, and although very healthy, active, and sunny, there is horrible vegetarian food and no vegan restaurants. Eating out is almost always a disappointment, and restaurants try way too hard to be hip while failing miserably.

  • Pingback: 'Green' job aspects in Asheville? - The Mountain Region including Asheville - City-Data Forum

  • Sierra

    it is good to be vegan. You’re much healthier without eggs, dairy and red meat.

  • oldfish64

    I live near there, and though it has an active street life, everyone smokes, and many smoke cigars. It is so bad that You cannot walk down the streets, much less gather for the street musicians.