One of these days while browsing a magazine, this small news clipping caught my attention. I made a note of it with my phone cam.
Few days later I heard a radio program while in the car that spoke about the same subject. Arguably, one has to win jackpot with the right set of genes to live long. It also suggested that one’s lifestyle and geographical location plays equal vital roles.
The information available from various sources differed but what I discovered about the world of centenarians is simply amazing.An article published on 12 July 2011 reported that the highest number of centenarians of the world resides in the US. Japan does not have as many centenarians but it has a higher proportion of its population aged 100 years or more. Japan’s average life expectancy of 82.9 years is the longest lifespan among the OECD countries as illustrated below.
On 11 September 2015, Japan Times quoted Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare estimating the number of centenarians in Japan at 61568, hitting a record high for the 45th straight year.
Italy might not feature in the list of countries with high number of centenarians, but people living in a remote town in the western coast of southern Italy are subject of study. Independent of UK recently reported that the town of Acciaroli has a disproportionately high number of centenarians in its population of about 2,000.Researchers have shortlisted 4 cities where the "fountain of youth" seems to flow freely as narrated in a feature in the Huffington Post.
Okinawa, Japan: It appears that people there eat more vegetables and did not abandon the earlier food habits under pressure of fast foods reports another post. The top Longevity Foods from Okinawa are Bitter melons, Tofu, Sweet potatoes, Turmeric, Brown rice, Shiitake mushrooms and Seaweeds (kombu & wakame)
Loma Linda, California: Find faith appears to the secret of their longevity as the Seventh-day Adventists in Loma Linda don’t smoke, drink alcohol or consume caffeine and some of them are on vegetarian diet like Okinawa. The trade off is eight to ten years longer than the average American, that is.Like the people of Okinawa, some (but not all) Seventh-day Adventists of Loma Linda consume a mostly vegetarian diet.
Ikaria, Greece: The fountain of youth flows here and this place is dubbed the “island where people forget to die.” Centenarians here enjoy long lives without fear of dementia and other age-related chronic diseases. Their Mediterranean-mountain lifestyle of laughing and playing often up until the wee hours of morning kept them well even in their 90s. Their diet is mostly fruits, vegetables, beans and olive oil.
Nicoya, Costa Rica: The Nicoyans follow two principles in
life. They have a clear sense of purpose in life and and sense of belonging with a strong
community and family ties. Like people of Okinawa, they also age slowly than their compatriots.
....if you are leading the right lifestyle in the right place, better start preparing for the guest list for the 100th Birthday Celebrations. If you are lucky, most of your friends will be around to give you the bumps!