HOW ABOUT BEING A CENTENARIAN
Jeanne Calment, 121, is the longest living women on modern record. The Frenchwoman will turn 122 this month. Despite the fact that the U.S. feeds the most expensive and most advanced healthcare system in the world, our life expectancies (presently at 76 years old) consistently rank much lower than other cultures, with sixteen countries boasting higher ones. So, if you want to be the Ms. Calment of the U.S., what can you learn from other cultures?
The cultures who live the longest include the Abkasians, who live on the Eastern shores of the Black Sea in the Caucasus Mountains, and the Hunzas, residents of the Himalayas of northern Peru. The Abkasians, for example, can claim 2,000 centenarians out of their population of only 150,000 people! The people of these villages live simple lives and elders are well respected. Their stress levels are very low, being they have few time pressures or deadlines. Their sleep cycles are longer and more natural, rising with the sun and retiring with darkness. Because they live in the mountains, they continue to be active in work until late stages of their lives. Therefore, their digestive cycles continue to function as they should.
One of the most important longevity-producing differences is their simple diets. They are often primarily vegetarian and tend to eat the same foods consistently throughout their lives: low in calories, low in fat and low in animal product content. Their water is usually from natural springs, full of minerals and vitamins.
So, if you, too, want to be a centenarian, take note: keep a simple diet filled with vitamins and minerals, keep your stress level down and continue physical activity. You'll be well on your way to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.