Mapping The Healthiest & Longest Living Counties in All 50 States [Interactive]

The Blue Zones project was a monumental undertaking that revolutionized how we look at the intersection of health, diet, community, and other factors that lead to long healthy lives.

The project founders identified regions around the world identified as blue zones. These areas stood out to the researchers as having populations with exceptional levels of health and longevity. 

Nine factors were identified as likely to contribute to the health of these blue zones populations, but only five regions in total were identified, and only one in the United States.

One thing that stood out to us: this small amount of official blue zones means that many of them are out of reach. Although a summer vacation is in the cards, many of us aren’t going to pack our bags and move to Sardinia.

So that got us wondering, can we align those same factors that define blue zones with similar county-level data to generate our own findings of the healthiest, highest “blue score” county in every state across the U.S.?

After countless hours of number crunching we’re happy to reveal the results:

Top Blue Score County Rankings

Here are the 50 counties, one for each state, that have the highest blue score, as compiled by us:

State County Life Expectancy Blue Score
Tennessee Williamson 82.1 169.48
Indiana Hamilton 82 163.10
Virginia Loudoun 84.3 146.33
Ohio Delaware 82.6 139.25
Pennsylvania Montgomery 80.9 136.31
Wyoming Teton 87.4 133.84
Georgia Forsyth 81.5 129.76
Kentucky Oldham 79.6 125.16
Illinois Lake 81.6 123.76
Minnesota Carver 83.1 122.51
Maryland Montgomery 84.3 122.48
Iowa Dallas 82.6 122.14
Kansas Johnson 82 121.38
New York Nassau 82.8 119.65
Alabama Shelby 80.4 111.52
New Mexico Los Alamos 83.8 111.45
California Santa Clara 84.4 111.26
Oregon Washington 82.5 110.41
Wisconsin Ozaukee 82 110.07
Utah Morgan 81.3 109.75
Alaska Haines 85.1 108.13
Arkansas Benton 79.6 107.08
South Carolina Beaufort 82.5 105.52
Michigan Livingston 80.8 105.44
North Carolina Wake 81.5 103.45
Louisiana St. Tammany 78.7 103.10
Texas Collin 82.7 102.84
Missouri St. Charles 80.4 102.49
Washington San Juan 84.2 101.99
Colorado Douglas 84 101.62
Montana Gallatin 82.3 99.04
Mississippi Rankin 79 94.10
Florida Collier 85.9 93.70
Oklahoma Canadian 78.5 89.83
Maine Sagadahoc 79.3 89.57
Vermont Chittenden 81.6 88.87
Idaho Blaine 84.9 88.26
West Virginia Tucker 78.1 84.67
North Dakota Bowman 82.7 82.41
South Dakota Lincoln 84 77.67
New Jersey Hunterdon 83.1 77.60
Nevada Storey 89.5 74.49
Massachusetts Middlesex 82 74.34
Nebraska Hamilton 81.7 73.00
Connecticut Fairfield 82.6 65.55
Arizona Santa Cruz 83.2 52.51
New Hampshire Rockingham 80.4 52.37
Rhode Island Bristol 81.4 38.61
Hawaii Honolulu 82.5 37.56
Delaware Sussex 78.5 4.59


Key Findings

  • Contrary to popular belief, some of the highest-scoring counties were not in health-obsessed states like California, but southern and midwestern states like Tennessee and Indiana.
  • Counties with higher household wealth tended to have high overall blue scores, as shown by Williamson county, Tennessee which is also one of the wealthiest.
  • Top scoring counties are often clustered near each other, such as Santa Clara, San Mateo, and Marin counties in California.

Methodology for the Creating Blue Score

The author of the Blue Zones book, Buettner, identified a list of nine lessons, covering the lifestyle of blue zones people:

  1. Moderate, regular physical activity.
  2. Life purpose.
  3. Stress reduction.
  4. Moderate caloric intake.
  5. Plant-based diet.
  6. Moderate alcohol intake, especially wine.
  7. Engagement in spirituality or religion.
  8. Engagement in family life.
  9. Engagement in social life.

We then found similar data sources in government data sets that best aligned with these nine factors, and mapped them as follows:

Blue Zone® Lesson

Blue Score Factor

1. Moderate, regular physical activity. % Physically Inactive
2. Life purpose. Mentally Unhealthy Days
3. Stress % Uninsured
  % Unemployed
  % Children in Poverty
  Income Ratio
4. Moderate caloric intake. % Obese
5. Plant-based diet. Food Environment Index
6. Moderate alcohol intake, especially wine. % Excessive Drinking
7. Engagement in spirituality/religion Community Health
8. Engagement in family life. Family Unity
9. Engagement in social life. Association Rate

As a 10th factor, we also included life expectancy in the computation. We computed the z-score for every county in each state, and averaged the z-score to come up with our composite score, the Blue Score. Then we ranked the counties at a state level to show the top county in every state.


We compiled data from the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps project as well as the Social Capital Index


The study was created for informational purposes only. has no sponsorship by or affiliation with Blue Zones, our BLUE ZONES brand, or Dan Buettner. This study is making no reference or claim to the official Blue Zones regions.