It's Christy Eldridge's job to make sure patients at OSF Saint Anthony stay in shape. So when she gained 38 pounds during her pregnancy, she knew she had to lose it rather quickly.
"I have a family of heart conditions and I wanted to make sure I wasn't going to be a statistic I wanted to make sure I was doing the things I could control exercise eating better and just working on overall wellness issues," says Christy Eldridge, the Sports Medicine Manager at OSF Saint Anthony.
Thousands of Illinois residents are doing just that. According to America's Health Rankings, Illinois is the most health-improved state in the nation. The study looked at several factors including fewer fatal car crashes and less people smoking. But some say this doesn't mean we are in a healthy state.
"There's no surprises, there's been some progress made in some areas and actually a few steps back in other areas," says Doug Beardsley, the Boone County Administrator.
Those areas include obesity, which has gotten significantly worse over the last 16 years. And health insurance. More people are living without it. So despite fewer kids living in poverty or a higher per capita in public health spending Illinois hits the charts at the half-way mark, making us the 25th healthiest state in the nation.
The study also took into account that fewer people are dying on the job and not as many of us are taking sick days off from work. Minnesota is ranked the healthiest place to live for the fourth year in a row.