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Do the Healthiest States Offer the Healthiest Snacks?

by Kelsey Murray

We recently released the list of the healthiest cities in the USA. Sadly, my hometown ended up on the list of the unhealthiest cities. There are many factors that determine whether a city or state is considered to be healthy or unhealthy, including the personal health of the citizens, ability for citizens to walk or bike to work, and number of fast food restaurants per square miles (OKC wins again in this bad competition).

Many members of Congress are proud to display their states’ best assets in their offices in Washington, D.C. Often times this includes flags, artwork by artists from their districts, and even local snacks. The New York Times recently released a list of the snacks that several Congress members keep in their offices. Perhaps there is a link between the food political officials offer and how healthy their state is? Let’s take a look.

  • Alabama: Golden Flake potato chips. It isn’t a real surprise that this state’s capitol is the fourth unhealthiest city in the USA.
  • Alaska: Smoked salmon jerky.
  • Arizona: Frito-Lay chips.
  • California: Sunsweet individually-wrapped prunes.
  • Florida: Orange juice and grapefruit fruit juices. Although the juices deliver plenty of nutrients and vitamins, fresh fruit would be a healthier option for these representatives.
  • Georgia: Coca-Cola
  • Hawaii: Macadamia nuts
  • Iowa: Jolly Time Pop Corn. This snack can be healthy if it is not soaked in butter and salt.
  • Jellybeans: Illinois' snack of choice

    Illinois: Jelly Belly jelly beans. These sweets are low in fat but can definitely give you a sugar rush and send your dentist into a panic.

  • Louisiana: Tabasco hot sauce
  • Minnesota: Spam. It’s a good thing that they don’t actually serve Spam on a regular basis in this Congressman’s office; his state has the healthiest city in the USA.
  • Mississippi: Pecans
  • New Jersey: Chocolate-covered Sun-Maid Raisins
  • Oklahoma: Peanuts. Since Oklahoma has the unhealthiest state in the USA, I was not expecting a healthy snack like peanuts to be offered in this state’s offices.
  • Oregon: Stumptown Coffee
  • Pennsylvania: Peeps marshmallows. Low in fat, high in sugar: these are similar to jelly beans.
  • South Carolina: Peach Salsa. This sweet/spicy snack is healthy, but the chips that it is probably served on should be eaten in moderation.
  • Tennessee: Little Debbie cupcakes
  • Texas: Snickers candy bars. Houston, TX is the ninth unhealthiest city in the USA.
  • Wisconsin: Craisins. The Congressmen would serve dairy products in their offices, but unfortunately, these goods are perishable, so they turn to dried fruits instead.
  • Wyoming: Queen Bee Garden’s honey candies
  • Vermont: Cabot cheese. Full of protein and calcium, this is a healthy snack in moderation.
  • Virginia: Peanuts

Although a few Congress members – like those from Texas and Arizona – are not serving healthy snacks, many are offering healthier options for their visitors to enjoy. We would like to extend sincere compliments to South Carolina, Wisconsin, Virginia, Oklahoma, Hawaii, Florida, and Alaska for offering such tasty and healthy options.

Did your state make the list? If not, so you think your Congressman offer healthy snacks in their offices? Tell us below in the comments section!


June 9th, 2011

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