Friday, May 9, 2008

Forbes Ranks Top 20 Junk-Food Obsessed Cities

AP Photo/Patti LongmirePeople all over the country love junk food, but Oklahoma City is most obsessed with non-nutritional treats, according to a study by Forbes magazine.

Forbes magazine looked at market data from The Nielsen Co. to determine where soda, candy and other snacks are most popular.

Pittsburgh; Memphis, Tenn.; Little Rock, Ark.; and St. Louis were also in the top five. (See full top 20)

Fifty-two major markets were compared, and researchers looked at how much cookies, hot dogs, candy and pizza were bought.

Forbes also broke down the data to show which junk foods -- soda or candy, for example -- dominated in certain markets.

Pittsburgh, for example, led the way in ice cream. Oklahoma City was in the top of all eight categories that were covered, but the magazine said residents were particularly fond of potato chips and pretzels, as well as cookies and ice cream.

A food researcher quoted by the magazine said that ethnic differences could contribute to certain snacks reigning in certain areas. For example, areas with higher percentages of Caucasian people may like milk-based products such as ice cream more, because lactose intolerance isn't as prevalent in that group as others.

"It's generally thought by nutritionists that the two coasts have people who are lower in body weight than the nation's middle," he said. "In school, we called the Bible Belt the Blubber Belt," he said.

Forbes reported that, since 1980, the number of obese adults in the United States has doubled, and an estimated $120 billion per year is spent combating obesity-related ailments, such as heart disease, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

Source: here

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