Jeff Levi heads Trust for America's Health, the organization that co-authored the report. He says in a relative ranking, D.C. comes out better than all states except Colorado. But he also notes that in the absolute sense, the District still has an unacceptably high level of obesity.
Levi also says the overall obesity rate of almost 22 percent masks large disparities in the population. For example nine percent of white women in D.C. are obese, compared with 40 percent of black women. Almost 10 percent of white men are obese compared to almost 27 percent of black men.
"So there are big breakdowns in terms of race and ethnicity," he says. "And you'll also see big disparities in terms of income."
Maryland and Virginia are in the middle of the pack. But Levy says compared to those states, D.C. has more policies in place to slow down the obesity epidemic. And he says there are more opportunities in the District to get in physical activity. For example, public pools are free and many people use mass transit.