Live Long and Prosper – By Andy Roman, LMHC,MS,RN – Hippocrates Institute

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What helps us live longer?

By Andy Roman, LMHC,MS,RN

There are seven noteworthy subcultures or communities where not only is the average lifespan significantly longer than in other parts of the world, but where more individuals live into old age than other places. Let’s see what they do right. We will focus on four.

Okinawa, Japan

Okinawa boasts the highest number of centenarians per capita in the world! Gardening, as a widespread and common activity, brings older citizens the benefits of sunshine, exercise, and nutritious plant-based foods. Okinawans adhere to a philosophy that promotes eating in moderation, and never gorging. They consume a lot of seaweed. They also have a sense of purpose, a positive outlook on life, and close social support groups called moais.

Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica

The prevalent mindset in this population encourages a lifestyle that is physically active, with plenty of time in nature as well as time spent on family and spirituality. They sleep 8 hours. And their diet includes not only nutrient-rich local fruits, beans, rice and corn, but also water that’s naturally high in energy.

Ikaria, Greece

Home to mineral hot springs, Ikaria has been a health destination for decades. Its residents stay active through walking, farming, and boating, but they also take time out to nap and socialize. They supplement their Mediterranean diet with lots of wild greens and drink a local nutrient-rich herbal tea. The community as a whole encourages good health habits and promotes regular social engagement.

Loma Linda, California, USA

Loma Linda, about sixty miles east of LA, is a community of 23,000 that includes about 9,000 Seventh-Day Adventists – a group that is significantly longer-lived than the average American. Adventist culture focuses on healthful habits such as vegetarianism, and excludes alcohol, caffeine, and smoking. Adventists drink plenty of water, exercise regularly, and tend to maintain a healthy weight. They nurture emotional and spiritual health, value their family relationships, and prize volunteering.

Here are some common ingredients of these particular communities:

1. A cultural environment that reinforces healthy lifestyle habits like diet and exercise

2. Strong social networks

3. Lots of gardening!

4. A cooperative community spirit

5. Public health care that is easily accessible

6. Seniors are valued as members of family and the community

7. A limited or zero consumption of refined sugar and other processed foods

8. Extremely low-stress lifestyles. (The American Medical Association has noted that stress is the basic cause of more than 60% of all human illness and disease.)

OK, those are some community and lifestyle factors in longevity. What about the personal, inner life traits or habits of people who live a long life?

The Longevity Project: Surprising Discoveries for Health and Long Life from the Landmark Eight-Decade Study, by Friedman and Martin, (Hudson Street Press, March 2011) provides some surprising findings:

1. The strongest predictor of long life was conscientiousness, which is another word for self-responsibility. Conscientious people are less likely to smoke, engage in risky behavior, and have accidents; and they are more likely to focus on the big picture, and make good health choices moment to moment.

2. Avoiding stress alone doesn’t add up to longevity, but being engaged with meaningful work does. A sense of purpose far outweighs the absence of hassles. In fact, service to others ranked high in Friedman and Martin’s study – even greater than feeling loved by others! Go figure.

3. Being part of something bigger than yourself: selfish people die younger than people who belong to a group or to a movement. That can be a church or a religion, a healthy lifestyle, or the peace corp. People who volunteer for something live longer than those who don’t, but it has to be selfless. (The science shows that people who volunteer only for their own personal satisfaction don’t live any longer than people who don’t volunteer at all.)

4. Humming and singing. Yes, humming and singing. The healthiest people in the world seem to intuitively know the value of oxygen and regularly practice deep breathing in some form or other. Rigorous daily exercise is one way; humming or singing, another. (I bet the happiness factor plays into that).

5. Last, but not least, the authors found that people over 100 years old laugh a lot. In fact, easy to laugh and laughing often, are two of the traits high on the longevity list. Norman Cousins, author of Anatomy of an Illness, who cured himself of a serious autoimmune disease, through laughter (Marx Brothers films were his thing) believed that human emotions controlled the biology of our body and led to health or sickness.

I have only two things (my two cents) to add to all these findings:

Express yourself! People who are in touch with and show their emotions tend to feel more connected with others and with life itself. They tend to feel more at home in their skin and carry less tension overall. It’s the best way to stay mentally, physically, and spiritually healthy.

Focus on and fill your world with beauty and gratitude.

Those, to me, are the strongest, most natural normalizers in life. They keep the heart open and the will to live strong. They deepen our sense of appreciation and heighten our sense of acceptance. They feed the most real part of us.

Isn’t it beautiful that the things that extend life also improve its quality, and that the things that improve the quality of life also extend it? The goal, after all, is not just more time, but feeling wonderful all the time.

Source: https://hippocratesinst.org/learning-centre/blog/wellbeing/live-long-and-prosper/

 

Blue Zones Project Bulletin – 4-23-20

In the rapidly changing and often confusing time of COVID-19, Sharecare and Blue Zones Project have had the opportunity to witness how individuals, organizations and communities are working together to help address the fallout of this virus. One of the most dynamic and active organizations that we have observed is the Pisgah Health Foundation (PHF), a public 501 (c)(3) charity that was founded in 2019 by a board of seven individuals. Their focus wa, and remains on improving the health, wellness, and lives of Western North Carolina residents by targeting underlying social determinants related to health, food insecurity, housing, social cohesion, and education. The organization evolved from the Transylvania Regional Hospital Foundation and serves five counties in Western North Carolina.

Long before COVID-19, Lex Green, President of PHF, introduced the concept of Blue Zones Project to his board in the spring of 2019. He was convinced that Blue Zones Project and its parent organization, Sharecare, Inc. were perfect collaborators to help accomplish PHF’s mission to target social determinants. In August 2019, following months of due diligence by PHF and Sharecare, Brevard, North Carolina was identified as the 50th Blue Zone Project community in North America and the first in the Carolinas. Significantly, the Pisgah Health Foundation board members understood and valued the significance of Blue Zones Project and ways to provide evidence-based, metric-driven processes to help citizens make healthier choices through the built environment, food and nutrition options, and where individuals work, play, and live.

At about the same time the local Blue Zones Project team was literally ordering furniture for its new office in downtown Brevard, the first hints of a new virus in China were circulating. Fast forward to mid-March 2020 and the entire world was held captive by COVID-19 with mandatory shelter-in-place orders to “flatten the curve” to lessen the strain on hospitals and emergency service providers. Like other communities around the world, non-essential workers in Brevard and across North Carolina were told not to come back to work. Businesses shuttered, schools closed, and even recreation areas were closed.

In this time of crisis (health and economic), Sharecare and Blue Zones Project want to highlight the Pisgah Health Foundation leadership and board members for the many decisive actions they have taken to support not only Brevard, but other communities within their footprint.

  • Created a Physicians Round Table consisting of over 45 practicing and retired physicians who meet twice a week by Zoom to discuss specific ways that Pisgah Health Foundation can leverage its resources regarding COVID-19.
  • Led by Dr. Rik Emaus, a retired physician and Blue Zones Project steering committee member, a team of doctors is working with the Transylvania County Health Department, the Brevard Rotary Club and others to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 at the senior centers by providing needed Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and other resources to help keep this vulnerable population healthy and out of the hospital.
  • Created a COVID-19 Rapid Response grant fund to assist non-profits needing financial funds to maintain or increase their capacity to support local social service needs. Within the past three weeks, the Board has awarded one million dollars in grant assistance. Of this amount, the Foundation has already deployed $322,500 to assist local non-profits focused on COVID-19 activities. Reducing food insecurity for those in need as well as working with the County and other non-profits to find safe locations to house homeless individuals who are either infected by COVID-19 or are symptomatic are two examples.
  • Worked with local business owners and manufacturers to either source or manufacture items such as face shields and hand sanitizer that can be used by local physicians, senior centers and others interacting with the public.

Michael Acker, SVP Blue Zones Project, reflects, “The Blue Zones Project framework is a proven model for organizing decisive and efficient community engagement. We are encouraged to see this type of innovation and collaboration, which will ultimately create more resilient communities across North America.”

by: Dr. Allen Weiss, Chief Medical Officer – Blue Zones Project and Mark Burrows, Sr. Community Program Manager – Blue Zones Project Brevard

Click here to sign up to receive news and updates from Blue Zones Project.

 

Adventist Health West Acquisition of Blue Zones, LLC

Dear Community Champion,

We are excited to announce that Blue Zones has been acquired by Adventist Health, a mission-driven, non-profit health system that serves more than 80 communities on the West Coast in more than 20 hospitals and 250 clinics.

What does this mean for the future?

Blue Zones is proud to be the global leader and pioneer in using an environmental, systematic approach to improving the health of entire cities and communities. Adventist Health shares our mission, vision, and values, and their community integration efforts align perfectly with our work.

By combining our mission-driven cultures, we can scale our efforts and resulting impact at a whole new level and in the process truly provide the model to transform the health of America. We believe this partnership represents the future of healthcare in America.

Our entire staff is now part of the Adventist Health family. Our leadership, staff, and contact information will remain the same.

 

We come to work every day to make the health of our communities, our nation, and our world better. This commitment is stronger than ever during this global crisis.

If you have any questions about this exciting news, please contact me at any time.

Please find attached press releases that went out today specific to the Blue Zones,LLC acquisition by Adventist Health West and the extension with our strategic partners at Sharecare.

 

Sincerest thanks,

Tony Buettner

Blue Zones Adventist Health Press Release – FINAL _1_

Blue Zones Sharecare Press Release 040720

When Coronavirus Emptied the Streets of Sardinia, Music Filled Them – Blue Zones

A singer-songwriter anthropologist who has been experiencing Italy’s coronavirus pandemic reflects on how pandemic-inspired songs connect people and reveal shifting power dynamics.

By Kristina Jacobsen, cultural anthropologist, ethnographer, and singer-songwriter. Jacobsen is an associate professor of music and of anthropology (ethnology) at the University of New Mexico (UNM), her research interests focus on language, identity, and expressive culture. 

 

Since a quarantine was imposed in parts of Italy on March 8 to stop the spread of COVID-19, I’ve been struck by the silence. In a place where people love to engage, touch, talk, and constantly debate, the lack of sound—especially of people’s voices—is eerie.

On the island of Sardinia, where I have lived since June*, the silence is palpable. It seems to weigh on the landscape.

On March 11, the policy of “shelter in place” went from being recommended to being mandatory. All bars, restaurants, cafés, and other “nonessential” businesses were closed until at least April 3.

From my open door in the seaside city of Cagliari, I see only occasional passersby, walking briskly and purposefully down the city’s main shopping street, dutifully clutching their autodichiarazione—papers that justify their reasons for leaving home.

In train cars, grocery stores, and pharmacies, the smell of bleach and hand sanitizer assaults the senses. Strikingly absent is the aroma of strong espresso, usually a ubiquitous part of the city’s olfactory landscape.

City squares are hosed down each night with large water tanks. Police officers patrol the roads. In a city known for its rich and fecund smells, its sensuous approach to life, and its vivid festivals, the streets feel sterile and empty.

But into this void of daily scents and sounds, a multitude of melodies has been born: balcony concerts, recordings, and in-home videos under the hashtags #flashmobsonoro, #iorestoacasa (“I’m staying home”), #lamusicanonsiferma (“the music doesn’t stop”), and #tuttoandràbene (“everything will be OK”).

These performances—original songs, covers, spontaneous performances, and humorous commentaries—are a sonic response to this government-imposed silence. Each of us is reaching out across the ether, from the solitude of our home to someone else in the solitude of their own home.

I came to Sardinia to study the Sardinian language, conduct anthropological fieldwork, and write and record an album with Sardinian songwriters. I was drawn to the intensity of social life on this island, its incredible culture of hospitality, and the profound appreciation people here have for music and sound.

In his song “Su Baballoti” (the cockroach), singer-songwriter Antonio Pani bemoans how the new coronavirus has crept into every corner of Italian social life. Antonio Pani

The COVID-19 pandemic has upended much of that research. But it’s also revealed new and important ways in which music echoes and amplifies the tensions that vibrate through Sardinian daily life. The songs emerging from the quarantine are a profound form of social commentary on Sardinian perspectives of power, relationships to the Italian mainland, and the ways the virus has rocked longstanding ideas of privilege and status between Italy’s north and south.

On March 12, a song arrived on one of the lively WhatsApp groups I am part of. It spoke eloquently of the connectedness of cultures. In the video, Antonio Pani plays an Irish bouzouki in a Sardinian style, wears an Oregon sweatshirt, and sings a Spanish-influenced tune reminiscent of the storytelling corrido ballads of the U.S.-Mexico borderlands, where I lived and studied previously.

The style—cantu campidanesu—is a poetic form of song well-known on the island. The genre, called gòcius or gosos, is Iberian in origin, and harkens to a time when Sardinia was colonized by Spain from about 1325 to 1708. It is primarily religious, but in its secular form, a gòcius often satirizes a person or an issue of the day. They can also be songs of protection for people, the harvest, and livestock.

In the song—called “Su Baballoti,” or “the cockroach”—Pani uses the metaphor of a cockroach to convey how the novel coronavirus (sa corona) has crawled into every nook and cranny of everyday life. He references face masks and laments the suspension of kisses during greetings and goodbyes, and the absence of gestures like the brief brush of a hand on an arm to affirm connection.

It reminds me of the day before the lockdown, when I was sitting alone in an outdoor café. A man asked the people at a neighboring table for a light. As he held out his cigarette, his girlfriend reminded him, in Italian: “Respect the social distance of 1 meter.”

Pani plays with the word “corona,” which also means “crown” and symbolizes power. He addresses the novel coronavirus, singing in the southern version of the Sardinian language, Campidanese: “Even if you walk around with a crown / you will never be our king.”

“Even if you walk around with a crown / you will never be our king.”

He describes the powerful ways the pandemic has impacted Sardinia and the northern Italian region of Lombardy. “Italy is in torment,” he sings. “Sardinia has also been affected but not like Lombardia, which remains in our thoughts.”

Then he stares straight at the camera and earnestly sings: “Baballoti, get away from here. You will not win.”

Performing a parody of Sardinia’s distinctive cantu a tenòre style, Giuseppe Masia and three other singers complain about the 13,300 northern Italians who fled to the island during the COVID-19 pandemic. Giuseppe Masia

Another song circulating is an example of Sardinia’s traditional cantu a tenòre style, which UNESCO designated an intangible cultural heritage. It imitates a type of rhythmic song that accompanies village dances and features four male voices singing a cappella in Sardinian-inflected Italian and low, guttural voices. The lead singer-songwriter is Sardinian comic and cabaret singer Giuseppe Masia, and his tone is both cheeky and deadly serious.

The song documents the 13,300 Italian northerners who fled to their second homes in Sardinia over the last two weeks, right before the borders of Veneto and Lombardy were cordoned off and declared “red zones.” Thirteen thousand is a number equivalent to all the visitors who come to Sardinia during the Italian vacation months of July and August.

The recent influx has, understandably, been the source of much consternation among Sardinians, who see these “northerners” as the main vectors for the virus.

Masia sings in a strident, nasal voice, with the three accompanying voices pulsating underneath his: “Coronavirus: When you can’t find a face mask anywhere (they were all purchased by Aunt Gavina) / and the people give you dirty looks when you breathe in public.” The song ends with Masia threatening, in a melodramatic style, to shoot any “Milanesi” (people from Milan and elsewhere in the north) he meets on the street.

The situation represents a bizarre reversal of a centuries-old dynamic in which poor southerners, including Sardinians, move to northern Italy for work. (Unemployment in Sardinia right now is over 30 percent.) Northerners have often treated southerners as “hicks,” or terroni (“people of the earth”). They have viewed them as symbolic vectors for poverty and lack of education, and as literal vectors for disease.

And in a perhaps unprecedented moment of reversal, this disease has hit communities of privilege first—in Italy but also elsewhere—and socially marginalized communities last.

On one hand, wealthy northerners recently arrived in Sardinia on ferries with their cars packed full of food, ready to hole up in their beach houses, and either unaware of their privilege or unconcerned that they might bring the disease to an island long perceived by mainlanders as remote and desolate. The Sardi (Sardinians) feel taken advantage of and exploited.

On the other hand, in their quickness to judge their northern neighbors, some Sardi are repeating the exact behavior visited upon them while living on the “continente.”

So, COVID-19 has created a moment of truth, when the tables are finally turned.

But many of these northerners are also Sardinians who live, study, and work in Milan and other industrial centers, send valuable stipends back home, and have claims to family, villages, and homes in Sardinia. So, the people Masia threatens to harm might be members of his extended family.

In a time when the enemy can potentially be anyone, the novel coronavirus is both dividing and dissolving our distinctions between “us” and “them.”

Italy is a place where there is no word for privacy. In Italian, people have to borrow the English word “privacy.” The constant kisses, touches, exclamations, and opinions can at times be overwhelming for newcomers.

But I have never longed for the sense of social overwhelm and intense human contact that I associate with Sardinia like I have during this quarantine.

On March 13, I took part in a #flashmobsonoro. Each participant was supposed to play songs from our balcony for 15 minutes, then post the video to Facebook.

I live in an underground apartment with no windows, so I performed from my doorway, with my dog at my feet. I played four original songs, three country songs in a mix of Sardinian and English, and one folk song in Norwegian. As my Sardinian language teacher taught me, in the chorus I sang:

Nois tenimos sas istorias nostras / Lassat totu fora s’ajanna / Ca custu sero nudatteru nos importat / Finzas chi sa manu tua istringet sa mia”
(We all have our stories / Leave your troubles at the door / Because tonight nothing else matters / Long as my hand is in yours)

It was a breath of fresh air to play live music and to know others were doing the same, somewhere around the corner, across the island, or on the continent. When I finished my set, I looked up at a group of people who gathered to listen, the lit sign of the closed shop behind them glowing above their heads like a halo.

Grazie,” I heard someone say. I couldn’t see who was speaking, so looked up to a fourth floor balcony. A man in his early 20s waved at me. “Grazie,” he said again. We made eye contact. “De nudda,” I responded in Sardinian. You’re welcome.

The author performs her song “Maison Dancer” from her apartment during a #flashmobsonoro. Kristina Jacobsen

 

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(Naples, Italy): Quarantined Italians in the Casoria neighborhood in Southern Naples, sang across balconies last night in unison: “People like us will never give up. Come on, Come on, Come on. Strength, Italy! Strength, Naples! Come out on your balconies. We are all united. The virus that is facing us will not defeat us!” # 🎥: Courtesy of Susy Unica Silvestre. Los italianos que están bajo quarantine cantaron todos juntos desde su balcón “gente como nosotros nunca nos rendiremos. Vamos vamos vamos. Fuerza, Italia! Fuerza, Napoli! Salgan a sus balcones. Estamos unidos. El virus que nos enfrenta no nos vencerá!” # Leri será a Napoli le persone in quarantena hanno cantato dainloro balconi cantando che persona como loro non si arrenderanno mai. Il virus che ci sta di fronte non ci sconfiggerà.

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Special thanks to ethnomusicologists Marco Lutzu, Diego Pani, Ignazio Cadeddu, and Bastianu Pilosu for their assistance in the translation and interpretation of the songs discussed; to musician Antonio Pani for permission to share his song “Su Baballoti”; and to Radio Limbara for their permission to reprint their meme here. Gratzias!

* Editor’s note: On the advice of the U.S. State Department, the author had to temporarily leave Italy due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

 

Source: When Coronavirus Emptied the Streets of Sardinia, Music Filled Them – Blue Zones

Secrets For Longevity & Happiness: Dan Buettner | Rich Roll Podcast 

Thanks for watching! Read all about Dan Buettner here 👉🏼http://bit.ly/richroll504

Back for his 3rd appearance on the podcast, Dan Buettner is a world record setting explorer, National Geographic Fellow, longevity expert and NY Times bestselling author of “The Blue Zones” and “The Blue Zones Kitchen: 100 Recipes to Live to 100”.

Picking up right where we left off, this conversation dives even deeper into Blue Zones research, breaking down the factors that promote longevity and happiness.

Enjoy! ✌🏼🌱 –

Rich EPISODE 504 AUDIO PODCAST Blog & Show Notes: http://bit.ly/richroll504

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Flashback Friday: The Okinawa Diet – Living to 100 Michael Greger M.D. FACLM

What would happen if you centered your diet around vegetables, the most nutrient-dense food group?

Why do those eating plant-based diets live longer? There are all sorts of mechanisms I find fascinating:

And a couple of new ones: The Benefits of Calorie Restriction for Longevity and Does Intermittent Fasting Increase Human Life Expectancy?

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

What’s The Downside To Eating A Little Bit Of Animal Products?

What’s The Downside To Eating A Little Bit Of Animal Products?

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Blue Zones January, 2020 Update from Tony Buettner

Dear Community Champions,

I hope this email finds you well and Thriving!

As most of you know, The last few months have been very exciting here at Blue Zones with the release of Dan Buettner’s “Blue Zones Kitchen” which was the number 1 selling book on Amazon.com and on the NY Time best selling list for 8 weeks!

In addition, lots of new Blue Zones Projects and Blue Zones Activates starting around the country!

I wanted to share with you the media coverage over the last month per you area of interest being it research, Blue Zones Projects, Blue Zones Kitchen or Blue Zones Activate!

We look forward to continued conversations to bring these important collaborations to your community!

BLUE ZONES

American Journal of Medicine: The Blue Zones as a Model for Physician Well-Being

Well + Good: 9 Healthy Foods Greek Centenarians Eat for Longevity

mindbodygreen: 19 Best Pieces of Advice We Heard On Our Podcast This Year

Good Housekeeping: 45 Achievable New Year’s Resolutions for Healthier and Happier Living

Well + Good: Calling it: These will be the biggest wellness trends of 2020

Shape: What is the Blue Zone Diet?

Well + Good: Prevent Mindless Eating by Organizing Your Kitchen Like the Longest Living People in the World

Sharecare: Want to Live to 100? Go Here

Express: How to live longer: A ‘blue zones’ diet could increase life expectancy

Insider: Biologically younger people who defy their real age often have 5 things in common

GQ: Does Japan’s Okinawa hold the secret to a longer life?

Well + Good: 8 Healthy Foods Italian Centenarians Eat Each Day for Longevity

Well + Good: 7 Healthy Foods Japanese Centenarians Eat Each Day for Longevity

NBC News: Want to live to be 100? Take a page from these “Blue Zone” residents’ playbook

Well + Good: Are Your Friends Health Heroes or Holding You Back? Here’s How to Find Out

MSN: Actually, casual conversations are legitimately helpful for keeping you healthy

The New York Times: How to Be a Better Friend

Wes Moss: Interview with Dan Buettner, author of Blue Zones

Well + Good: 8 Science-Backed Things You Can Do Now to Help You Live Longer

USA Today: Seven strategies to put your diet on a plant-based path

BBC: Gardening could be the hobby that helps you live to 100

ON PURPOSE with Jay Shetty Podcast: Dan Buettner and Ben Leedle: On How to Design Your Life to Live Longer, Healthier, and Happier

SELF: 9 Books That Will Change Your Relationship With Food

Business Insider.My: Nutrition myths that we stopped believing in 2019, including the carnivore diet and ‘superfoods’  

BLUE ZONES KITCHEN

Feel Good Podcast: Eating for Longevity with Dan Buettner

New York Journal of Books: The Blue Zones Kitchen: 100 Recipes to Live to 100

Forks Over Knives: Dispatch from Okinawa—What the World’s Longest-Lived Women Eat

TODAY Show: Can the ‘Blue Zones’ lifestyle help Americans live past 100? This group tried it

AARP: Emmy-winning Filmmaker Dan Buettner on Blue Zones

mindbodygreen: 3 Unexpected Habits of People Who Live Longer, From the Founder of Blue Zones

Insider: The man who unlocked the world’s secret to living to age 100 says you can skip the gym

Insider: 7 foods that the world’s longest-living people swear by, from wine to nuts

CNN: A ‘blue zones’ diet: Live longer from what you eat

TODAY Show: 4 recipes from around the world that could help you live longer

TODAY Show: ‘The Blue Zones Kitchen’ collects recipes of the world’s oldest people

Distractify: Everyone is Talking About the Blue Zones Diet—But is it Actually Healthy?

Downtown with Rich Kimball: Dan Buettner 12.3.19

First For Women: Want to Live Longer? Try Eating More Carbs Like Blue Zones Super-Agers

The New York Times Bestsellers: Advice, How-To & Miscellaneous  

The New York Times Bestsellers: Advice, How-To & Miscellaneous (2nd Week)

Medium: The Eating Habits of the Longest-Lived People in the World 

The Washington Post: Publishers Weekly Best-Sellers

Furthermore: 5 books high performers should read this month

Easy Reader News: The wisdom of ancient kitchens

CNBC: 9 self-care gifts for your stressed out friends and family

Well + Good: The 9 Best Healthy Cookbooks of 2019 that Inspire Us to Eat and Live Well

E! News: Daily Pop’s Holiday Gift Guide for Her 2019

Eating Well: These 5 Healthy Habits Could Help You Live to 100, According to a Longevity Expert

CNET: The Best New Health and Wellness Books to Read in 2020

Maria Shriver: Ikaria Stew from the Blue Zones Kitchen

Equinox: 5 books high performers should read this month

National Geographic: 12 Great Books for Travelers This Holiday Season

Wall Street Journal: Best-Selling Books Week Ended December 28 (BZK #1)

Fox Business: How the Blue Zones diet is helping Americans in these cities live longer

Sony Alpha: Alpha Book Club: 8 Books for the Photography Lover in Your Life

Hallmark Home & Family: Melis Family Minestrone

National Geographic: For a Long Life, These Are the Foods to Live By

KYMN Radio: The Blue Zones Kitchen — 100 recipes to live to 100

WBUR (NPR): Here & Now: What Blue Zones Can Teach Us About Getting Healthy in 2020

BuzzFeed: We Ate Like The Longest Living People for a Week

Yahoo Finance: How the ‘Blue Zones’ diet is helping Americans in these cities live longer

Better Homes & Gardens: These ‘Blue Zones’ Foods May Help You Live Longer—Wine and Bread Included

Medium: New Year, New You

PBS—Amanpour & Co: Dan Buettner on the Diets That Help People Live Longer 

BLUE ZONES BRANDS

Just Spas & Adventures: Longevity Programs and Retreats by Blue Zones—Borgo Egnazia in Puglia, Italy

Luxury Travel Advisor: Borgo Egnazia Partners with Blue Zones

Hartford Courant: Hartford proposes streets for Connecticut’s first “bike boulevards” that would restrict cars and favor cyclists

WLRN: Fort Lauderdale Wins Grant to Get People Out of their Cars and onto Flagler Greenway

Forbes: Five Cities Named Winners in the ‘Made To Move’ Grant Program

Meeting of the Minds: Made to Move are Helping Cities Redesign for Active Transit

Grants 

BLUE ZONES PROJECTS / BLUE ZONES ACTIVATE

Florida Trend: Collier County’s Blue Zones Project sees rate of heart disease deaths drop

Easy Reader News: Tripping over Health with Blue Zones Project

Hawaii Tribune Herald: Hawaii Island communities earn Blue Zones certification

Fort Worth Star-Telegram: Fort Worth’s bike share will be free the first Friday of each month in 2020

NBCDFW: Fighting Hunger with Blue Zones Project Fort Worth

Go Erie: Corry Blue Zones receives $20,000 grant

Newsday: Good to Know: Japanese-inspired fitness groups are just seniors’ speed

Erie News Now: Corry Blue Zones Project Receives $130,000 in Funding

Herald and News: Safe Routes Partnership Selects Blue Zones Project

Orlando News Amplified: Blue Zones to Explore Community Well-being Project

Orlando Business Journal: Wellness Initiative so Residents Can Live Longer

Austin Statesman: Austin a candidate for ‘Blue Zones’ health project

Yahoo Finance: Whole Foods and Blue Zones Join Forces

Weatherford Democrat: Texas Health’s well-being program among nation’s best

PRWeb: Blue Zones and Barry Community Foundation Launch Groundbreaking Countywide Transformation

PRWeb: Groundbreaking Blue Zones Project Expands to Canada

The Transylvania Times: Initiative to Help Brevard Make “Healthier Choices”

Strong Towns: Building Healthier Places that Reflect Our Values

Some Say Beans And Grains Didn’t Exist 10,000 Years Ago And Our Bodies Were Not Designed To Eat Them- Pamela A. Popper, Ph.D. ND,

Food Over Medicine: The Conversation That Could Save Your Life

Overmedicated, overfed, and malnourished, most Americans fail to realize the answer to lower disease rates doesn’t lie in more pills but in the foods we eat.With so much misleading nutritional information regarded as common knowledge, from “everything in moderation” to “avoid carbs,” the average American is ill-equipped to recognize the deadly force of abundant, cheap, unhealthy food options that not only offer no nutritional benefits but actually bring on a disease.

In this lecture, Pamela A. Popper, Ph.D. ND, speaks about the dire state of American health—the result of poor nutrition choices stemming from food politics and medical misinformation. But, more important, she shares the key to getting and staying healthy for life.

Backed by numerous scientific studies, Pamela A. Popper, Ph.D., ND details how dietary choices either build health or destroy it.

The longest-lived people run on a high-carb diet, and it’s a big part of their secret to living to 100 – Dan Buettner – Blue Zones

Sorry, high-fat keto fans, but people who live in the world’s five “Blue Zones” all eat tons of beans and grains, and very little meat or dairy.

Dan Buettner grew up in Minnesota during the 1960s, where he was fed a high-carb diet of bright yellow macaroni and cheese and sweaty red hot dogs wrapped inside flaky croissants.

“We didn’t know better,” he said.

But when the cyclist and storyteller started traveling around the globe, and into the homes of people in locations where elders routinely live to see their 100th birthday in good health — the world’s “Blue Zones,” as he calls them — he noticed something distinct about the ways that they were all eating.

The fare was nothing like his Midwestern childhood diet of processed foods, but Buettner noticed that each Blue Zone kitchen did have a few staple ingredients in common. Like his own meal plans, they were all fairly high in carbohydrates, but these Blue Zone diets centered on carbs of a different kind.

“The four pillars of every longevity diet in the world are whole grains, greens, nuts, and beans,” Buettner said. “When you crunch the numbers, it’s very clear that it’s a 90% to 100% plant-based, very-high-carbohydrate diet. About 65% carbs, but not simple carbs like muffins and cakes — complex carbs.”

Buettner’s chronicled some of his favorite recipes from each of those regions in a new Blue Zones cookbook, featuring dishes from Ikaria, Greece; Sardinia, Italy; Okinawa, Japan; Nicoya, Costa Rica; and Loma Linda, California.

People who live to 100 tend to eat lots of beans

blue zones diet
Staples of the Blue Zones include hearty soups filled with beans and herbs; fermented breads like sourdough; and wine. 
Westend61 via Getty Images

Whether the cuisine is from the sandy western shores of Costa Rica or industrial church kitchens in California, it is loaded with beans.

Beans are a high-carbohydrate, high-fiber food that many dieters have recently criticized, as they’re nearly impossible to eat on high-fat, low-carb diets like the trendy keto plan.

“You can get very successful with a diet if you tell people they can eat what they like to eat — meat or cheese or eggs and all that,” he said. “I draw from people who’ve achieved the health outcomes we want. And I can tell you beyond a shadow of a doubt that they’re eating about a cup of beans a day.”

His favorite bean dish is a Greek “longevity stew,” loaded with fennel, black-eyed peas, olive oil, tomato, and garlic.

The diet plan lines up with much of the scientific research suggesting that people who eat more vegetables and other plants while consuming little to no processed or red meat are less likely to die earlier (and more likely to have healthier hearts) than people who routinely fuel up on animal products.

Blue Zoners don’t go to the gym, and they rarely eat meat

In the Blue Zones, there are no banned foods. Instead, the environments people live in promote their good health almost effortlessly. There’s no weighing ingredients or worrying about the amounts of carbs, protein, and fat to include in a day’s meals.

Yet there are certain things that people in Blue Zones don’t eat very often. Chief among the rarities are dishes high in saturated fats and sugars, including meats, dairy, and desserts.

On average, people living in the Blue Zones eat meat about five times a month. It’s usually a three- to four-ounce cut of pork, smaller than an iPhone.

When it comes to bread, Blue Zoners tend to favor fermented varieties like sourdough over plain white yeasted slices, and they pair small amounts of pasta and grains with other staple ingredients like fresh greens or beans.

“When you combine a grain and a bean, you get a whole protein,” Buettner said. This means that, much like any meaty dish, a plant-based meal can feature all the essential amino acids that help the body grow and repair itself, but “without the saturated fat, without the hormones,” he said.

In addition to focusing on plant-based foods, people in the Blue Zones also tend to cherish the importance of lifelong friendships, move around consistently each day (every 20 minutes or so), and live with purpose. These built-in support systems are key components of longevity too, Buettner believes, and just as important as the good food.

“We keep beating this dead horse of diets and exercise and supplements,” he said. “It’s Einstein’s definition of insanity.”

Dan Buettner
Dan Buettner. 
Crystal Cox/Business Insider

If you’d like to try the Blue Zones eating routine, Buettner suggests finding a few plant-based recipes that you really like and making it a habit to cook them for yourself again and again. None of the recipes in his book include any meat or eggs, and most shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes to prepare.

“The secret to eating for 100 is to find the plant-based foods heavy with beans and grains and vegetables, and learn how to like them,” Buettner said. “If you eat a Blue Zones diet religiously, it’s probably worth eight to 10 extra years of life expectancy over a standard American diet. You take those years and you average them back into your life? It gives you about two hours a day to cook.”