For the month of July I will be dedicating my blog reading and discussing the book, The Blue Zones Lessons For Living Longer From the People Who’ve Lived the Longest by Dan Buettner. Please read along with me and comment on what you are getting out of this interesting and insightful book. I look forward to learning from you as well.
Let’s jump right into Chapter 2: The Sardinian Blue Zone Where Women Are Strong, Family Comes First, and Health Springs from the Rugged Hills.
Sardinia, is considered part of Italy and the second largest island located in the Mediterranean sea. Because of it’s remoteness genetically the population is very similar and this might be part of the longevity blessing for this blue zone. Traditional social values and economic isolation has also kept lifestyle more traditional and less changed by the modern-fast paced changes in the world. Before 1950’s there had been health problems and death related to poor hygiene especially water quality that caused infections disease and death. Once those issues began to be addressed the number of people living over 100 increased significantly. So as public issues started to get addressed the culture and genes of the population allowed people to live significantly longer lives.
With that background in mind, reading about the elders in Sardinia made me feel like the heart of this culture is family values and hard work. Almost all of the families took their elders into their homes so there were several generations living under one roof. Their was a particular mention of the number of men centenarians it seems more than in other blue zones. The men that were interviewed took pride in the working on the land or herding. It gave them a reason to get up in the morning and a reason to provide for their families.
It was sad for me to read that the new generation that was not as aligned with traditional values had a 15 percent overweight population; they were categorized as more outwardly focused and they seem to be following the trends of unhealthiness just like everyone else outside of the blue zones. What did you think?
In Vibrant Health,