Sociologists have shown that rates of “obesity” correlate with economic class. That is, the poorer you are the more likely it is that you will be overweight. This is, in part, because healthy, low-calorie food tends to be more expensive that calorie rich, nutrient poor food; and also because poor neighborhoods have fewer grocery stores, forcing the poor, especially if they don’t have cars, to shop for groceries at corner stores, gas stations, and fast food restaurants. When there are so many other things to worry about, like not going hungry, food quality is not prioritized. Level of fitness, then, correlates with social class (and the time and money it affords you) and the things that correlate with social class, like level of education.
The American College of Sports Medicine has released data showing these correlations, if measured at the level of U.S. metro areas, as reported at The Atlantic and sent along by Tracie Hitter, a doctoral student at New Mexico State University.