What are Blue Zones? And why do people live so long here?

Blue zones are where people have the highest life expectancies, per capita in the world.

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What are blue zones?

Blue zones is a non scientific term coined by Dan Buettner who was studying areas of the world where people lived long lives. Blue Zones – are areas where people live the longest lives on earth.

What defines a blue zone?

A ‘Blue Zone’  simply describes a geographic area where people have the highest life expectancy. Meaning people in these areas live the longest.

The worlds Blue Zones are:

Sardinia – Italy 

Ikaria – Greece

Okinawa – Japan

Nicoya Peninsula – Costa Rica

Loma-Linda California – United States of America

There are 7 main similarities that the blue zones share in lifestyle habits:

  1. Movement and exercise is built into daily life – gardening, walking, harvesting, cooking and daily chores are the main source of mobility, rather than high stress activity.
  2. Diet: Consisting mainly of whole plant foods, and a small intake of meat roughly 5 times a month. Blue Zoner’s typically eat a diet rich in vegetables, legumes, whole grains and nuts.
  3. Fasting and The 80% rule. Most blue zoner’s eat meals that are lower in calories than the average diet, meaning they typically ‘eat less’ than the average person. There is also evidence throughout the blue zones that most communities practice intermittent fasting.
  4. Alcohol in moderation – particularly alcohol rich in anti-oxidants such as red wine is consumed in small doses.
  5. Sleep – people in Blue zones get sufficient sleep roughly 7 hours a night, and many take naps.
  6. Having purpose – many people in blue zones are religious or spiritual.
  7. Social life – Blue zoner’s are noticeably social into older age.

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