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Columbus County rated state's unhealthiest

READ MORE: Columbus County rated state's unhealthiest

Columbus County has been named the unhealthiest county in the state. The University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation released a report today on the overall health of counties in all 50 states.

The counties were measured by how healthy people are and how long they live.

Good ol' country fried cookin' is one of the best parts of a rural community, but it's also what helped stamp Columbus County as the unhealthiest county in North Carolina. Physical environment, exercise, tobacco use and diet are some of the factors used to rank the counties.

"I think a lot of people around here are, they were raised in the country and that's the way we've always ate," said Roberta Sykes, owner of Roberta's Country Kitchen in Columbus County.

Columbus County's health director says lack of transportation in Columbus County keeps many people from going to the doctor. Unemployment also makes some people less active and leaves them without health insurance.

County leaders met today to look for healthier options.

Bladen County also ranks among the unhealthiest in the state, while New Hanover is among the best.

To see the whole study, visit

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