Back to articles

What is Blue Zone Living


A new partnership unlocks the keys to healthier living.

What does it take to live better and longer in Mendocino County? Often, people focus on changing behavior and habits to improve their health. While making healthy food choices and choosing to go for a walk after dinner put you on a path to better living, there is more that can be done to help you in the environments where you spend most of your time.

Adventist Health’s work in the community transcends the provision of healthcare services with its mission to live God’s love by inspiring health, wholeness and hope. This is why the healthcare system has partnered with Blue Zones, a project that helps communities implement its world-famous evidence-based approach to living better, longer.

Blue Zones offers intentional strategies to optimize policies, city streets, public spaces, schools, restaurants, grocery stores, worksites, faith and community engagement to create environments centered around individual, organizational and community well-being. In addition to the focus on environmental change, the Blue Zones lifestyle emphasizes social change. This is done through building one’s connection to purpose and relationships with others. This model has proved to be effective across all socioeconomic groups.

“At Adventist Health, we are driven by love,” says Judy Leach, vice president of Adventist Health in Mendocino County. “We are investing in Mendocino County so that all community members feel a connection and are in environments that support their health.”

The Blue Zones Project is not a prescribed approach that is applied to a community. Instead, the process is driven by each community’s unique needs, offering multiple opportunities for engagement and customization.

“For the Blue Zones Project to be successful in Mendocino County, we need all community voices to be heard,” says Roseanne Ibarra, director of community well-being at Adventist Health in Mendocino County.

In Mendocino County, the Blue Zones Community Project will occur over the next five years, with planning, implementation and certification phases.

Here are examples of what can be achieved through the Blue Zones Project

  • Lower obesity rates
  • Increase in productivity
  • Decrease in smoking
  • Lower stress levels
  • Community programming offering opportunities to connect with others and discover life purpose
  • Food policy councils
  • Healthy menu options
  • Bike paths and walkways
  • Sidewalk expansions

Lasting community transformation

Visit to learn more about community well-being initiatives.