As we mentioned before, a growing body of leading health, longevity and wellness experts all agree that Community—not medicine—is the ultimate facilitator and creator of health.
This is GREAT NEWS if you happen to be born into a health-conscious community and/or family…
…but what about those of us who weren’t?
That’s where community building and finding-your-tribe becomes an essential part of staying healthy.
You can see this play out in a number of ways, within families, within cities and even within entire countries, such as “The Blue Zones”—pockets of the earth that are home to the highest number of centenarians who are free of chronic disease.
There are countless examples recorded in scientific literature, books and documentaries of how people have successfully used community to live longer, healthier lives. This is a big part of what we will offer through Knew Health: a community that cultivates a KNEW experience of health throughout the country.
We’ll get into more details on what this looks like in just a moment, but first let’s look at a couple examples of how community facilitates health.
Example #1: The Moais
Our first inspiring example comes from Okinawa, Japan. Where life expectancy for women (90 years old) is the highest in the world
One of the contributing factors behind this success is what’s known as a “Moai”.
A Moai is a group of 5 friends who form their own support network/community, offering each other social, logistical, emotional and even financial support for a lifetime.
The Moai is a perfect living example of how a strong sense of community promotes and creates longevity and health.
Example #2: The Compassionate Frome Project
As reported in The Guardian’s recent article titled: “The town that’s found a potent cure for illness – community”[note]https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/feb/21/town-cure-illness-community-frome-somerset-isolation[/note], Frome in Somerset England has played host to a trial study on the effects of community on health outcomes…
…and the results were pretty darn dramatic.
What researchers found was that when people with health problems are supported by their community, the number of emergency hospital admissions drops significantly.
For example, during the three-year study emergency hospital admissions rose by 29% throughout other parts of Somerset, while they decreased by 17% in Frome.
The “Compassionate Frome Project” was launched in 2013 by Dr. Helen Kingston, with support from England’s National Health Service and the town council. Together, they were able to set up extensive networks of community groups to support people with specific health conditions in planning their care, handling housing problems, or even connecting with social groups.
The goal: to socialize those with illness to prevent isolation…and all the health pitfalls that come with it.
If it could reduce hospitalizations by that much in sick people, imagine what the power of community can do to prevent disease in the first place. Especially in a community of people who are committed to their personal wellness!
Now, let’s look at how Knew Health will utilize the power of Community within our cost sharing program
At Knew Health Community, we will help facilitate strong community creation for our members through activities such as batch cooking classes, fitness groups, Meetups, local events, online educational opportunities, social media groups, and more.
Much like the examples above, our goal is to connect health-conscious people to both combat the negative health effects of isolation and facilitate empowered, community health creation.
In other words: if you’ve been looking for a way to find your health-conscious tribe (a group of people who will be encouraging and curious about your healthy lifestyle choices vs. critical, resentful, or offended – or even just clueless) this is a great place to start.
Moreover, the only costs involved in being part of a Community include social expenses, like getting together for meals, experiencing online classes, helping out friends, travel, time, etc.—which is why it’s such an important part of the 5C model…
…and why we included it in our company name.
There’s one more aspect to this community piece…the final “C” which we’ll dive into our next article on “Culture”, don’t miss it!
-The Knew Health Community Team