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    Here at EatingWell, it's probably no surprise that we love healthy food. One of the best things about a nutritious, balanced eating pattern is that it can look different for everyone, while still yielding a healthy result. That said, it can still be a struggle for some. Eating healthy is, unfortunately, not as simple as personal choices or motivation. There are several factors that influence one's ability to eat healthy, such as environment, resources, skills, knowledge and preferences

    How people think about their health and the health of their peers can play a role in food choices, too. A recent survey conducted by Gurney's Seed & Nursery Company took a deep dive into how healthy people across America thought they (and their neighbors) were. They surveyed over 3,000 Americans across all 50 states to see how they perceived the healthy eating in their state. They first asked people to rate their own diet from 1 to 5, 1 being "very unhealthy" to 5 being "very healthy." They then asked people to rate their in-state peers' diets from 1 to 5 based on the same criteria. They added these scores together for a new rating, from 2 to 10, and averaged all responses for each state's "healthy-eating score."

    Obviously, since this survey is based on perception, it might not be totally scientifically accurate when it comes to how "healthy" a state's diet is compared to another. But it was an interesting way to quantify how healthy people feel like their state is and how they feel like they fare compared to others around them. It's also important to note that this survey ran in the last two weeks of December, around the holidays, which might have influenced people's responses. Let's see what they found. 

    Related: The Most Popular Vegetable in Every State 

    The 10 States with the Healthiest Eaters 

    There are the 10 states with the highest healthy-eating scores. This means that residents here felt like they followed a healthy eating pattern, and that their neighbors did, too (for the most part). It's important to note that the highest ranking state, Colorado, only scored a 6.86 out of 10. This could be a reflection that even residents here think there's some room for improvement. 

    1. Colorado (6.86) 
    2. Vermont (6.62)
    3. Washington (6.45)
    4. Massachusetts/Oregon (6.44)
    5. Minnesota (6.32)
    6. Utah (6.20)
    7. California (6.16)
    8. Arizona (6.14)
    9. Connecticut (6.10)
    10. Michigan (6.08) 

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    All of the states on this list were within 0.80 points for their healthy eating score, and Massachusetts and Oregon tied for the fourth place rank. 

    The 10 States with the Least Healthy Eaters 

    People in these states perceived themselves and their neighbors to have the least healthy eating patterns in the U.S. This was not based on any physiological measures, and it does not mean you have an "unhealthy" diet if you live in these places. All of these states scored between 5 and 6 points, meaning they ranked themselves to be in the middle of the healthy eating score range. 

    1. Oklahoma (5.02)
    2. Louisiana (5.10)
    3. Arkansas/West Virginia (5.18)
    4. Alabama (5.20)
    5. Mississippi (5.27)
    6. Kentucky (5.28)
    7. Indiana (5.34)
    8. Tennessee (5.36)
    9. Delaware (5.48)
    10. Missouri (5.52)

    All of these states were within 0.5 points for their healthy eating score, and Arkansas and West Virginia tied for third least-healthy state. It is also important to note that the perceived least-healthy state on this list (Oklahoma) was only 1.84 points behind the healthiest state on the list (Colorado). This means responses only differed by around one to two points between states

    Other Findings 

    This survey found some other interesting things about Americans' eating habits as well. Broccoli was the most popular vegetable, being called a favorite by 24.5% of respondents. Strawberries were deemed the most popular fruit, reported by 18.7% of respondents. Over 80% of people said they include vegetables in their diet because they actually like them, and not just because they're healthy. Music to our ears!

    The report also found that 79% of people plan on eating healthier this year than last, which could explain why scores were all in the middle of the healthy eating score range. People also find it most challenging to eat healthy when they are out with friends. For more information on the full report, check out Gurney's website .  

    Bottom Line 

    Especially with how health-focused Americans have become recently, it makes sense that no one rated their diet (or their state's diet) as being perfectly healthy, or a 10 out of 10. But it is eye-opening to see what state's residents thought about the eating habits where they live. This survey did not take any physiological measures or food frequency questionnaires, so it shouldn't be seen as a report on actual eating habits or physical health statuses. But it did provide insights into how Americans think about food, eating and where they live.

    Read the original article on EatingWell

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    What U.S. state has the healthiest people?
    1. Vermont. Vermont is considered the healthiest state in the U.S. Vermont's adult obesity rate is 26.6%, the seventh-lowest in the country, and its adult smoking rate is 15.1%, the 21st-lowest. Physical activity is common in Vermont, with just about 80% of residents reporting daily exercise, the seventh-highest. more
    What state has the healthiest soil?
    The mollisols are widely known as the best soils in the United States. Extremely fertile and of neutral pH, mollisols constitute a large part of the Wheat Belt and the wheat-growing area of Palouse in eastern Washington. more
    Which US state is the healthiest?
    Massachusetts is the healthiest state in the U.S., according to the most recent annual ranking from Sharecare, a digital health company, and the Boston University School of Public Health. more
    Which is the healthiest state?
    Massachusetts is the healthiest state in the U.S., according to the most recent annual ranking from Sharecare, a digital health company, and the Boston University School of Public Health. more
    What state has the healthiest air?
    Hawaii. Hawaii has an air quality index of 21.2, the cleanest average air in the U.S. This is well in the good air quality index range. more
    Why is Colorado the healthiest state?
    An Environment Primed for Healthy Living In fact, Colorado's working-age adults are healthier than their counterparts in most other states. It's because we're surrounded by opportunities to engage with the world around us and the people that share the same values. more
    Which state has the healthiest air?
    Hawaii Hawaii. Hawaii has an air quality index of 21.2, the cleanest average air in the U.S. This is well in the good air quality index range. more
    What state has the healthiest teeth?
    The study looked at 25 factors, including number of dental visits and other similar criteria. Connecticut has the best dental health. This is followed by the District of Colombia, Massachusetts, Hawaii and New Jersey. Arkansas, West Virginia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas have the worst dental health. more
    Why is Vermont the healthiest state?
    Vermont's strengths include its number one position for all health determinants combined, which includes ranking in the top 10 states for a high rate of high school graduation, a low violent crime rate, a low incidence of infectious disease, a low prevalence of low birthweight infants, high per capita public health more
    Whats the most healthiest state?
    Massachusetts is the healthiest state in the U.S., according to the most recent annual ranking from Sharecare, a digital health company, and the Boston University School of Public Health. more
    What state is the healthiest state?
    Massachusetts is the healthiest state in the U.S., according to the most recent annual ranking from Sharecare, a digital health company, and the Boston University School of Public Health. more

    Source: www.msn.com

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