Most people would tell you they'd love to be 100, but only about 1 in every 5,000 Americans will ever be centenarians (we wonder why).
Dan Buettner, a longevity expert and best-selling author, claims the key to longevity lies in a primarily plant-based diet, a culture built on respect towards elders, a communal sense of goodwill and connection to nature (and shockingly not CrossFit).
He explained it all in a Ted Talk from 2010.
Buettner has rounded up five "Blue Zones" in the world where people live to be 100 at much higher rates than anywhere else. They are geographically disparate but share the aforementioned characteristics.
The biggest surprise is Loma Linda, California. Buettner explains this is due to the notoriously stringent diet of Seventh-day Adventists, who abstain from pork and alcohol. Doesn't sound like too much fun, but more power to 'em.
Here, the five spots in the world where people live to be 100, and the foods to eat to mimic their life-lengthening diets:
- Goat's Milk
- Legumes (Chickpeas, Black-Eyed Peas and Lentils)
- Wild Greens
- Bitter melons
- Brown Rice
- Green Tea
- Shitake Mushrooms
- Fava beans
- Milk Thistle Tea
- Wine From Grenache Grapes
Loma Linda, California
- Whole Wheat Bread
- Soy Milk
Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica
- Peach Palms