More Than An Apple A Day

The longest lived people in the world live in Okinawa.  What is their secret?  Well, it isn't a secret and it is more than one thing.  Foremost among them is a low fat, whole food plant based diet, with  nearly 70 percent of calories coming from sweet potatoes.  You may  be surprised to learn that  only about 3% of calories come from fish, other meats or dairy.  Rice, beans, vegetables (including sea vegetables), and fruit make up the remainder of their diet.  You will find similar diets in other long lived groups around the world, such as the vegetarian and vegan Seventh Day Adventists in the USA.

In addition, they have a good social network, a spiritual outlook on life, and get plenty of exercise. 

Most centenarians definitely do NOT eat the standard American diet or even the modern Japanese diet, which increasingly includes meat, oil, dairy, eggs, sugar and other unhealthy foods which results in more cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other diseases.

To help us ALL learn how we can avoid the most common diseases and live a longer,  healthier, happier life is Dr. Michael Greger with this year's (fun!) annual presentation:

"More Than an Apple a Day: Preventing the Most Common Diseases"-
This video has had over a million views on YouTube already. Thanks Doc!

Be happy. Be well.


Martin J Frid said...

Thanks for this, very important for health. I'm just back from Brunei, a small city/country on the Borneo island, and I saw so many obese people it was really scary. Their diet must also have undergone too many changes. Too much imported meat available, together with the loss of traditional foods (I saw some taro in the local market but it was not served at restaurants) and too much sweet soft drinks. Sad.

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

This sounds all true and it is shameful the way we in Australia and other places eat junk food and then waste so much also. I've just returned from Tonga where people are very large, but most eat healthy food from their plantations and the sea.

Pandabonium said...

Wendy, thanks for the comment.

While Tongans do still eat healthy traditional foods like yams and taro greens, sadly, they also import a lot of unhealthy food.

The most frequently eaten food (in a 2001 study) was found to be chicken parts. They import over 5500 tonnes of processed meats (1996) such as chicken parts, mutton flaps, sausages, and corned beef - several times more than they did two decades ago.

You can download a report published by WHO from this page:

The researchers studied how much of each food was being consumed and meats, sugar, and bread are some of the most eaten foods.

Efforts to fight the trends have not stopped the increase and current target of the AusAID (as of November 2012) is to stop the obesity numbers in Tonga from increasing by 2015.