The Blue Zones are the fives areas around the world that have the largest population of centenarians and/or the highest life expectancy.
The five locations are:
Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica
Loma Linda, California
Hooray for California!!! We made the map.
In researching these five unique locations, the national geographic team found 9 common habits among all five.
Move Naturally - move throughout the day
Purpose - find what makes you get up in the morning
Less Stress - keep stress to a minimum, enjoy your day, meditate
80% Rule - stop eating when you are 80% full
Eat Mostly Plants - meat in small amounts occasionally - beans and vegetables mostly
Wine - drink moderately (1-2 glasses) enjoy with friends, use it to relax or socialize
Belong - Find your faith or group with common beliefs
Cherish your loved ones - put your family first and keep them close
Right Tribe - create social circles that want to live healthfully too
Genetics still play a role in those who live to 100, however by incorporating these 9 habits you can live a long life, free of chronic disease.
To find out more about the blue zones check out their site. It is chock full of great information, stories and recipes like the one below.
CRANBERRY PEANUT BUTTER BARS
3/4 cup walnut pieces (or other type of nut)
1 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking or instant)
1 cup dried cranberries or other dried fruit (or a combination)
1/2 cup vegan semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
3 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp vegan butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease an 8-inch-square baking pan.
2. Place the walnuts in a dry skillet and toast over medium heat until light brown and fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes, shaking often. Transfer them to a food processor.
3. Add the oats, dried fruit, chocolate chips, maple syrup, peanut butter, vegan butter and vanilla to the food processor, and pulse until crumbly. Continue to process until the mixture is well combined. Add a little water, a tablespoon at a time, if the mixture is too crumbly to stick together. Press the mixture evenly into the prepared pan.
4. Bake until lightly browned, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool, then refrigerate until completely cold. Cut into 2- by 4-inch bars. Wrap each bar individually in plastic wrap for easy transport.