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A picture of a healthy blue zone in Italy.

5 Lessons We Can Learn From the Blue Zones

The Blue Zones are five regions around the world with higher life expectancy and lower disease rates than average. They include Ikaria, Greece; Okinawa, Japan; Loma Linda, California; Sardinia, Italy; and Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica. Here are some reasons why many of those who live in the Blue Zones enjoy greater longevity.

Strong Social Networks

Blue Zoners have very strong social networks. They are highly engaged in their faith-based communities and have a sense of purpose in life. This deep connection to their surroundings helps them remain optimistic and focused on the wellbeing of others, providing them with a sense of satisfaction that influences their lifespan.

Daily Movement

Exercise is an important part of life in the Blue Zones. This doesn’t mean going to the gym every day, but living a lifestyle of low-intensity physical activity, like walking or gardening. By integrating exercise into their everyday lives, people in these regions can stay active and healthy without having to make a conscious effort to do so.

Healthy Diets

Traditional diets are rich in plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes and nuts. Meat is eaten sparingly, usually as a small portion. This diet provides Blue Zoners with essential nutrients while avoiding processed and unhealthy foods.

Limited Alcohol Consumption

Alcohol isn’t consumed to excess in the Blue Zones. People typically drink moderate amounts of wine with meals, and there’s usually a social component to the drinking experience. This helps reduce stress levels and makes it easier for people to connect meaningfully.

Community Engagement

Blue Zoners are highly engaged in their communities. They know their neighbours, eat together regularly, and look out for each other’s wellbeing. This sense of connection to their surroundings is an important factor in their longevity and happiness.

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