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The Unhappiest States of America

Not everyone can live in a blissful state, either emotionally or quite literally. So we decided to find out which states are the unhappiest, based on four data categories we can all agree are quite unhappy: alcohol deaths, poverty rate, self-reported obesity, and suicide rate. Unfortunately, if your state is first on this list, it’s the saddest state in the United States.

MostUnhappyStates-01

A couple words on methodology: We ranked each of the 50 states in our four categories of unhappiness:

CATEGORIES OF UNHAPPINESS

• Alcohol Deaths Per 100,000

• Poverty Rate by Household Income

• Prevalence of Self Reported Obesity

• Suicides per 100,000 (2x weight)

We decided suicide rate should be worth double since it’s such a strong barometer of unhappiness.

A quick example: If Montana was first in suicides per 100,000 people, it earned a total of 100 points in that one category. (And this is like golf, points are bad.) At the end, we added up all the totals and the states with the most points are deemed the unhappiest. Here’s a full list, for our non-visual learners:

Most Unhappy States

1

New Mexico

2

Oklahoma

3

Montana

4

West Virginia

5

Alaska

6

Arizona*

Wyoming*

8

North Dakota

9

Arkansas*

Kentucky*

11

South Dakota

12

Nevada

13

Idaho

14

Colorado

15

Louisiana*

South Carolina*

17

Tennessee

18

Indiana

19

Alabama

20

Kansas

21

Oregon*

Utah*

23

Missouri

24

Maine

25

Mississippi*

New Hampshire*

27

Vermont

28

Wisconsin

29

Georgia*

Washington*

31

Iowa

32

Michigan

33

North Carolina

34

Delaware*

Texas*

36

Ohio

37

Nebraska

38

Florida*

Pennsylvania*

40

Rhode Island

41

Virginia

42

Illinois

43

Minnesota

44

California

45

New York

46

Hawaii

47

Massachusetts

48

New Jersey

49

Connecticut

50

Maryland

*States with a tied ranking

Data sources: cdc.com, wikipedia.org


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