PRINCETON, NJ -- Roughly one in five adult Americans smokes, according to Gallup-Healthways Well Being Index data from 2009. At the state level, the percentage of adult smokers ranges from 13% in Utah to 31% in Kentucky and West Virginia. There is a strong regional aspect to smoking. All 11 states where a quarter or more of the population smokes -- the "well-above average" group -- are in the South or Midwest. All but one of the 11 states (including the District of Columbia) where fewer than 20% of adults smoke -- the "below average" and "well-below average" groups -- are in the East or West, the exception being Minnesota. Utah and California have particularly low rates, at 13% and 16%, respectively.
In seven states, between 23% and 24% of the adult residents smoke, making these "above average" in smoking rates, though not well-above average. The remaining 22 states fall close to the 21% national average smoking rate. Maryland is at 19% who smoke.