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Our very own Collier County was ranked the second healthiest county in Florida

Our very own Collier County was ranked the second healthiest county in Florida

There are a number of articles on the web discussing surveys taken about our very own healthy Naples.

Why is Southwest Florida such a healthy place to live? I grew up on Marco Island where many of the residents used their bikes to get around. My own father rode his bike to get to work. Residents run and walk on the beach on a daily basis. The salty sea air is known to benefit the respiratory organs and the skin, but also improves circulation and strengthens the body’s defenses. Florida is called the sunshine state as the sun is out all year which enriches our bodies with vitamin D.

The report is going further than leisure sea lifestyle. A report from County Health Rankings from the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation gave the Naples area top grades for healthy living, No.2 statewide in health outcomes and no.3 for health behaviors.

Good habits play a big role in our high rankings but also the consideration of economy and access to health care. The areas with more money tend to perform better.

Jim Nathan, president and CEO of Lee Memorial Health System, made a similar point. “We generally score well against other areas of Florida and nationally for clinical and medical interventions, but where Lee County falls behind is in our behavioral, lifestyle areas — physical activity, obesity, and smoking,” Nathan said in a written statement. “Poor health habits directly affect our health outcomes.”

Lifestyle choices such as healthy eating, smoking and exercise are considered.

Smoking and obesity decreased by one percent in Collier since last year. Physical inactivity increased by one percent, according to the data.

Stephanie Vick, administrator of the Florida Department of Health in Collier, said the department is elated with the results that the county is the second healthiest. “Where we live has a large impact on our health, and these rankings show that wellness is more than just health care,” she said in a statement. “By taking small steps to improve our lifestyle choices in areas such as healthier eating, increased physical activity, tobacco cessation, safety, and prevention we can together make a big impact on the health of Collier County.”   (quote from: )

Overall, Collier saw improvement in 18 measurements, 12 were unchanged and five worsened.

There will always be room to improve but we can be proud of our effort as a community to live healthy lives.

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