September 22, 2023 – Blue Zones

Seldom do I recommend watching any specific show on television. However, after recommendations from several patients. I have been watching this short documentary series on Netflix entitled “Live to 100: Secrets of the Blue Zones”.

This series is about geographic places where people become centenarians, that is, live to be 100. National Geographic explorer Dan Buettner has been studying longevity for over 20 years. He has identified these “blue zones” where people live not only the longest but the healthiest lives.

This is quite a contrast to how we live our lives with high stress and concerns about physical ailments, medications, the economy, politics, etc.

Buettner found there are at least 4 activities that are consistent throughout these Blue Zones around the world.
    1. People walk from place to place and do not rely on technology for transportation . Low-intensity physical activity is valued as people are active most of the day.
    2. They tend to have a purpose in their lives and participate in activities that are connected to their purpose. They are positive and believe in religion or are spiritual. Their stress level is very low, believing in not worrying about things they cannot do anything about.
    3. They eat moderately and follow plant-based diets of nuts, fruits, potatoes, and vegetables.
    4. Families and friends are extremely important and will spend more time with family than working excessively. Partners are invaluable and they nurture these relationships. They believe that their partners help them do what is right and avoid the wrong things.

“The big epiphany,” Buettner says in the documentary, “is that the same things that help us live a long, healthy life are the things that make life worth living.”

To me, what is important is not just living to 100 … but how I live to be 100. This includes my beliefs, my activities, how I manage stress, how I eat, what my purpose is, how I can be of help to others, and who I let into my personal circle of friends.

Yes, this coincides with what Buettner found. We cannot just take life for granted. We do have to work to live a healthy and meaningful life.

Don’t give up. It’s never too late to change how you live.

Thoughts? Email me at [email protected]..