Maybe it’s just because I read this in January, you know, that time of year when we all get excited about what we can do to better ourselves… or maybe it’s just because I really enjoy reading Dan Buettner’s research on centenarians alongside real life stories. In any case, here I am again with a review of another book about Blue Zones.
In this book, evidence and data about the healthiest and longest lived people are given expression through the stories of individuals who epitomise their lifestyles. There’s a chapter for each of the zones – from Sardinia and Okinawa to America, Costa Rica and Greece. To sum it all up there’s a chapter with 9 lessons that can be extrapolated to enhance all kinds of lifestyles.
The lessons are not what you might think they’d be. Surprisingly, they are not all about torturing yourself every day in a gym; giving up alcohol; or taking all the ‘fun’ out of life. It’s quite pleasing to see instead that moving naturally, treating yourself to ‘Happy Hour’, being a social butterfly and learning to be a great person to be around are included in the strategies for a longer, healthier and happier life.
To be sure, you can’t know which factor will increase the number of healthy years you get. Asking someone who lived to be 100 how they did it is like asking a tall person how they got to be so tall. But implementing even a few of the strategies in a way that seems right for your life could only have benefits. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to take a nap (and yes, that is an endorsed strategy!)