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Moorings Park Recognized as a Blue Zones Project

From healthy menu options and walking paths, to programs and activities that encourage socialization, belonging, and purpose, Moorings Park Communities’ commitment to the Blue Zones Project is evident across the three wellness-focused campuses.

Moorings Park, a nationally accredited, nonprofit, Medicare-certified community, and the only A+ S&P and Fitch rated Life Plan community in the country, is recognized as one of 60 Blue Zones in Southwest Florida. The Centers for Healthy Living (CHL) are the heart of the Blue Zone Project’s® initiative. Offering an integrated approach to wellness, the resident-focused, physician-based amenities improve healthcare delivery to residents, expand knowledge of the aging process, and introduce new approaches to care that celebrate the positive aspects of aging while optimizing vitality and happiness.

The CHLs also offer personalized physician services and integrated rehabilitation programs that feature customized cardio and strength programming geared toward seniors, as well as cognitive and memory training.

According to the Blue Zones Project’s engagement lead, Kate Walter, Moorings Park was recognized because it integrated Blue Zones Project’s principles into the community, including habits shared by the world’s longest-living people, such as moving naturally, eating with a plant slant, and having a healthy social circle.

"As an example, the clubhouse at Moorings Park incorporates Blue Zones inspired choices into its daily menu options," said Walter. "The programs and activities for residents also highlight our main principles, strengthening the community’s mission to attain successful aging for each person they serve."

According to Walter, Moorings Park incorporates the Blue Zones’ philosophy through such programming as its massage and spa treatments, fitness programs, educational presentations, healthy menu options and opportunities for socialization, such as the annual concert series at Bower Chapel.

Dan Buettner, New York Times best-selling author and Blue Zones expert, led the effort in identifying the five areas of the world where people live the longest and are the healthiest: Okinawa, Japan; Sardinia, Italy; Nicoya, Costa Rica; Ikaria, Greece; and Loma Linda, California. It was discovered that all Blue Zone areas shared nine healthy lifestyle habits, which was coined the Power 9®, These habits have been separated into four groups: move naturally, have the right outlook, eat wisely, and connect.

  1. Move Naturally: Blue Zone environments encourage inhabitants to walk and participate in activities through expert city planning.

  2. Know Your Purpose: Research shows that having a clear reason for getting up and out of bed in the morning can help us live both longer and better.

  3. Downshift: Downshifting is the act of adopting a simple, sustainable lifestyle free of materialism.

  4. 80% Rule: People in Blue Zones make an effort to stop eating when they are 80% full.

  5. Plant Slant: Plant-based diets are the most common in Blue Zones.

  6. Wine At 5: Moderate, regular consumption of alcohol is common amongst Blue Zone dwellers.

  7. Belong: Attending faith-based services can add years onto your life.

  8. Loved Ones First: Keeping family close by can add years onto your life, as well as decrease child mortality rates and lower disease.

  9. Right Tribe: Surrounding yourself with social circles that support healthy behaviors helps us shape our own.

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