Population Profiles

Population Profiles is a snapshot of the people of Texas. Some of the subjects presented have a direct connection to health and well-being. One example is reflected on the Education and Employment page. People with higher levels of education are more likely to be in better health and live longer.

For questions about this data, send email to CHS-info@dshs.texas.gov

Population Estimates

Population estimates for the years 2016-2019 were obtained from the Texas Demographic Center. As 2020 is a census year, the Texas Demographic Center was unable to provide population estimates for that year. Thus, population estimates for the year 2020 were generated from the U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division and released in June 2021; CC-EST2020-AGESEX-[ST-FIPS]: Annual County and Puerto Rico Municipio Resident Population Estimates by Selected Age Groups and Sex: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2020. The data include population estimates from file: 7/1/2020 County Characteristics Resident Population Estimates.

ACS 5-Year Estimates

The U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (ACS) is an ongoing survey that provides vital information on a yearly basis about the United and its people. It provides communities with reliable and timely social, economic, housing, and demographic data every year. Tables used in these dashboards include 2020 ACS 5-year estimates of 1) Sex by age, race, and ethnicity (B01001); 2) Languages spoken at home for the population 5 years and older (C16001); 3) Sex by educational attainment for the population 25 years and over (C15002); 4) Employment status for the population 16 years and over (B23025); 5) Median household income in the past 12 months (B19013); 6) Gross rent as a percentage of household income in the past 12 months (B25070); and 7) Means of transportation to work by travel time to work (B08134). Details on the data and collection methods can be found in the ACS data user handbook: https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/library/handbooks/general.html


The Texas Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), initiated in 1987, is a federally supported landline and cellular telephone survey that collects data about Texas residents regarding their health-related risk behaviors, chronic health conditions, and use of preventive services. This surveillance can be used to monitor the Healthy People 2020 Objectives for current smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, exercise and physical activity, flu and pneumonia vaccinations, cholesterol and cancer screenings, seat belt use, as well as other risk factors.

In 2011, BRFSS began including data received from cell phone users and using a new data weighting methodology called raking or iterative proportional fitting. These changes allowed BRFSS to reach segments of the population that were previously inaccessible-those who have a cell phone but not a landline-and produce estimates of risk factors and diseases that are more representative of the population. Therefore, data collected in 2011 and beyond cannot be directly compared to data collected before 2011. In the dashboards above, these years are separated into two dashboards to avoid such comparisons.

Access to Parks

Data for access to parks is sourced from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Healthy Community Design Initiative and Geospatial Research Analysis and Services Program. National percentage of population that resides within half a mile of a park.” Data were accessed on 02/25/2021. Park data are from NAVTEQ (2010), Esri StreetMap Premium HERE (2016), and PAD-US (2015), providers of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data. The underlying map database is a compilation of first-hand observation of geographic features and third-party data sources.

If a half- or one-mile buffer crossed county or state boundary, the population residing within this buffer is estimated and attributed to the county within which the population resides. These estimates are not attributed to the county within which the park is located.

Food Insecurity in The United States

Data on food insecurity were sourced from 2019 historical food insecurity estimates from Map the Meal Gap as produced by Feeding America county-level estimates. In order to create food insecurity rates and numbers, the relationship between food insecurity and its closely linked indicators (poverty, unemployment, homeownership, disability prevalence, etc.) are first analyzed at the state level. Then, the coefficient estimates from this analysis are used in conjunction with the same variables for every county and congressional district. Together, these variables can generate estimated food insecurity rates for individuals and children at the local level.

Data sets and more information can be found at: https://map.feedingamerica.org/. For additional information about methodology and approach, see Feeding America FI Projection Methods & FAQ or contact research@feedingamerica.org.

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