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Poll: Iowa among top states for well-being

NIT – A new poll lists Iowa among the top ten states with the highest well-being in the nation in 2013.

According to Gallup, Iowa was number 10 on the list, ranking the 50 states on well-being for their residents.  North Dakota and South Dakota, Nebraska and Minnesota took the top four spots.  West Virginia and Kentucky had the two lowest well-being scores, for the fifth year in a row.

The data is based on more than 178,000 interviews with American adults across all 50 states, conducted from January-December 2013.  The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index score for the nation and for each state is an average of six sub-indexes, which individually examine life evaluation, emotional health, work environment, physical health, healthy behaviors, and access to basic necessities.  The scale is from 0 to 100, with 100 being ideal well-being.

Gov. Branstad
Gov. Branstad

Gallup reported that all states rely on strong leadership to spearhead their well-being efforts. Iowa’s Healthiest State Initiative, for example, is a privately led, government-supported program designed to improve Iowa’s well-being, and has received Gov. Terry Branstad’s support since its inception. This sort of steady advocacy for higher well-being can serve as a positive example for other leaders to follow as states try to improve their residents’ well-being in 2014.

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