Well, for the bar you could just zoom in in the token (edit token, config, hover over the layout section on the bottom left, scroll mousewheel up). The bar sets to the edge of the token, so if that edge is beyond your physical token's base, you should be able to see the bar after zooming only a little bit. The same would work for states on a 4x4 or 5x5 grid (though it would only be good for 5 or 6 states). Here's a quick n' dirty sample of what I mean...
In this, the health bar is just maptool standard, set to thickness 10 (as high as it will go). The states are grid image 4x4 (though you could probably go 5x5 to slim the image down a hair and allow for one more visible state), and I zoomed in on the token by 9 ticks on the mousewheel (though that is very subjective based on your mouse settings). As you can see, both the bar and the state images are outside the actual grid square occupied by the token. You could also use a bar image that's even thicker, to make it a bit easier to see from a distance.
If you used a custom token that's mostly transparent with a little identifier in the middle, you wouldn't have that problem of the token image creeping outside the grid square. For a simple way to do that to a regular token, just edit the token image in GIMP to double each dimension, then center the image & make sure everything else is transparent. That should make the token image half its normal size before you zoom in, leaving plenty of room for the area outside the square to stay "empty". A simpler method would be to just create a token in GIMP/Photoshop, using a letter/number identifier rather than a token image... Just make sure that the letters/numbers take up less than half of the space in the token, and that they're centered. The download set "Torstan's Markers" from the RPTools Library would work well as a starter for those type of tokens.
The only disadvantage I can see is the token overlap making it difficult to select a token that's flanked on a cardinal direction (N/S, E/W) by other tokens. With tightly-packed groups of tokens you may need a quick macro to move the selected token to the bottom of the draw order, allowing you to grab the token in the middle.
EDIT: bloody tablet... redid the image link on my real computer to get it to work.
Another EDIT: You can also put notes in the Label field on Edit Token, those would show up below the token name on mouseover.