The secrets to living a long life

Published Jul 16th 2013

There are currently five areas of the world designated as Blue Zones.  They are Okinawa in Japan, Sardinia, the Nicoya peninsula in Costa Rica, Loma Linda in California and Ikaria in Greece.

To qualify as a Blue Zone, an area must have the highest life expectancy at middle age or the most centenarians per 1,000.  Residents in these areas have a life expectancy that is approximately a decade longer than the Western averages.

Researchers studying these populations, including Professor Michel Poulain who created the name Blue Zone, have identified particular aspects of a healthy lifestyle that could be replicated elsewhere, possibly leading to a general increase in life expectancy.

In Ikaria, the lifestyle includes fresh air, afternoon naps, sex, a relatively low-calorie diet and a strong, enduring sense of community and fellowship.

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