I recently attended a lecture by Dan Buettner, the author of “Lessons for Living Longer from the People Who’ve Lived the Longest”.  Dan has traveled the world to find people that have lived long and healthy lives.  Some of the places he visited were Okinawa, Sardinia and even Loma Linda, California, to name just a few.  Although the people and cultures are so vastly different-and he confessed not understanding a word of Japanese- he discovered the habits of the longest living people, the centenarians.

Here’s what he discovered:

1. Move more. This is not just time spend in the gym but daily physical activity such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, talking on the phone standing up instead of sitting down, parking further away in the parking lot and so on.

2. Find your purpose in life, the reason why you wake up in the morning.  Knowing your purpose can add an extra seven years to your life, according to Dan Buettner.

3. Relax. Stress can cause chronic inflammation.  Find  stress relieving activities that help you relax.  It may be a daily five minute meditation session or a one hour yoga class, whatever it is, make it a habit.

4. Eat until 80% full or “Hari hachi bu” as the Okinawans believe. Basically, it means eat until you are comfortably full.

5. Eat a more plant-based diet. And when you do eat meat, enjoy it as a condiment, not the focus of the meal.

6. Enjoy a glass of wine. Alcohol, in moderation, has been found to have heart healthy benefits.  Ideally, have it with company, such as Happy Hour.

7. Surround yourself with the right friends.  Healthy behaviors are contagious, hang out with people that make you feel happy and good about yourself.

8. Community. Be part of a larger group. The majority of centenarians belong to a faith-based community.

9. Family first. Take care of your kids, aging parents and your committed relationships. You take care of them and in turn they will take care of you.

If you found this as interesting as I have and want more details check out his website and or book.

Live well!

 

 

 


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