Healthiest state for seniors


ALBERT LEA, Minn. – For the second year in a row, Minnesota is top in it’s class when it comes to senior health.

According to a study conducted by the United Health Foundation, Minnesota ranks first as the healthiest state to be a senior, while Iowa ranks in the top 20.

The stats take into account physical activity, fewer hospitalizations and a rise in hospice care but, as Katie Davis of the Good Samaritan Society mentions, it’s about more than just physical well-being.

“We also focus on their social, spiritual, and emotional and mental well-being. Offering activities such as garden club, as daily devotions the nail spa; always to allow our seniors to live a well-balanced and meaningful life,” said Davis.

Hazel Kepple is an avid walker, and like many of her friends, they make the effort to get out at least once a day to help stay active. And it’s a trend that’s paying off across the state.

“I just feel real fortunate that I am able to walk and do not need a walker and so forth. Many of the people here do, which complicates it a bit but, I feel real fortunate that so far I haven’t had to use one,” said Kepple.

The study says that with more seniors choosing where they want to be at the end of life, this puts an increase in hospice care around the country.. Which they say has also lead to fewer people being hospitalized for preventable diseases.

“We definitely see that seniors want to come to some place where all of their needs can be met. Through their emotional needs to their physical needs to their spiritual needs, they’re looking for a place where all their needs can be met,” said Davis.

In almost every state, the number of active seniors showed an increase.

High poverty rates along with low levels of preventative care are considered to blame for states that fall low on the list.

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