Most people have at least one guilty food pleasure. But could where you live have some influence on your indulgence of choice?
Data scientists at Lifesum, a health app that allows its 35 million users to track food and exercise and create diet plans, analyzed data input by its users to see which states are eating the most junk food, and which might be doing better at resisting the temptation.
The analysts at Lifesum identified 27 common junk foods, out of a database of roughly 2 million foods, that Americans regularly recorded into the app.
They found that consumers in certain regions shared similar cravings. For example, residents of the heavily populated Tri-State area (New York, New Jersey and Connecticut) craved sweet breakfast items like pancakes and jelly donuts, while the mountain states indulged in beer. States in the Midwest turned to fried chicken, while consumers in the Northeast craved ice cream. Mudpies turned up a lot in the western states.
Several states were also identified as eating the most junk food overall. The top five of these were Alabama, Mississippi, Wyoming, North Dakota and Kentucky. These states, except Wyoming, all have obesity rates higher than 35%, according to a recent obesity report.
Based on Lifesum's data, these are the junk foods that users in each state logged the most. Junk food was defined by the Lifesum researchers as a "fattening food, drink or dessert" that has little nutritional value.