Want that Big Mac? This is how many years of life Washingtonians would give up for one

Gene J. Puskar/AP Photo

The average life expectancy in Washington is 80 years, but it seems that Washingtonians are willing to turn that number into 76 years if it means they wouldn’t have to give up fast food.

A recent study conducted by the medical information website Drug Genius found that Washington residents are willing to give up four years of their life in exchange for being able to continue getting their fill of Big Macs and Baconators.

If you think that’s bad, Hawaii, Montana and North Dakota residents are willing to give up an almost unbelievable 12 years of their life to maintain a fast food diet. Those from Alaska, Colorado, Maine, and Mississippi seem to be the most sensible, willing to give up just two years of their life for greased-up fries and burgers.

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Perhaps it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. A recent study found a correlation between eating fast food, otherwise called “ultra-processed foods,” and dementia. The study found that reducing ultra-processed foods by 10% in a diet with the equivalent proportion of minimally processed food was associated with a 19% lower risk of dementia.

A study from the University of Michigan also found that eating a hotdog can cost a person up to 36 minutes of their life, and a chicken wing can claim up to three minutes and 30 seconds. Try not to think too deeply about how many minutes you’ve already eaten away.

The 3,222-person nationwide survey also found that 60% of people would rather give up alcohol than fast food, and the average last time a respondent participated in an aerobic activity was three months ago.

Who thinks burritos and pizza are healthy?

If those figures weren’t worrying enough, the Drug Genius survey also found that 27% of correspondents — 870 people — believe moderate fast food consumption has health benefits.

Spoiler: It’s not.

Of those who believe that fast food has health benefits, 45% said that they think a foot-long sandwich holds the most health benefits… perhaps if you remove the meat and wholewheat bread?

Foot-long sandwiches were followed by 20% of respondents who think burritos and tacos are healthy, 11% of people who think cheesy, meat-loaded pizza is most nutritious, and 8% for either burgers and fries or fried chicken.

One in three correspondents also said they’d rather take health supplements than exercise to stay healthy.

But hey, who needs to exercise to stay healthy when you can dig into a foot-long meat sandwich and enjoy a lettuce-topped taco?