07/18/2013 06:38 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

The Saddest States In America Need Better Emotional And Physical Balance, Psychologist Says (VIDEO)

There's a dark cloud hanging over a stretch of America.

A poll released in February ranked the 10 happiest states in the union, but it also identified a so-called "sadness belt." Spanning 10 states from Louisiana to Ohio, the area was found to be the saddest in the country, according to the latest rankings from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.

But what makes a state sad? HuffPost Live's Alex Berg talked with Maryland-based psychologist Dr. Mary K. Alvord on Wednesday about the factors that contribute to statewide gloom.

Alvord said the most important part of determining happiness -- or sadness -- is the balance between emotional and physical health.

"They really feed on one another. If you are physically healthy, you are more likely to be able to engage socially, you can work better, you are able to do so much more and feel empowered," Alvord said.

Check out the in-depth discussion on the nation's saddest states at HuffPost Live here.



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