Unhealthy Tri-Cities: Looking For The Better Food Choice - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Unhealthy Tri-Cities: Looking For The Better Food Choice

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KENNEWICK, WA - We live in an area where fast food vendors are abundant and plentiful. Maybe too plentiful...

A recent study showed the Tri-Cities as one of the most obese areas in the country. It is not always the quickest choice, but the healthy choice might be better for you in the long run. Luckily there are some shops popping up in our area that give you a little bit of both.

"We actually mill our own wheat every day," said Mike Stoker, the owner of Great Harvest. With fresh ingredients and zero unhealthy additives, Great Harvest Bread in Kennewick has had a very successful first year.

"We use wholesome ingredients," said Stoker. "Nothing artificial, no conditioners or anything like that. It's all just scratch fresh bread."

For some of their regulars, the faster fresher food trend cannot come to the Tri-Cities soon enough.

"There are more and more choices to eat healthy than what we used to have before," said Annie Goodwin, a dietitian at the Benton Franklin Health District. "But, it still is a buyer beware and a buyer be informed."

The buyers at Extreme Pita have the option of looking at the menu and figuring out not only some of the calorie counts, but Weight Watcher users can even count points.

"To be able to get healthy food at a faster rate of pace and sitting down with a server is pretty nice to have," said Mason Noftle, the manager at Extreme Pita.

Local dietitians at the Benton Franklin Health District say it is important to know the facts like calories counts, chemicals used and even fat content. When it comes to what you are biting into.

"You can look up and ask," said Goodwin. "And if they can't provide that then maybe it's time to try a different vendor."

According to recent health rankings this year about 27% of restaurants in an average American county are fast food. In Benton County it is more like 49% and in Franklin County that number climbs to a surprisingly high 57%.