Author and adventurer, Dan Buettner, studied the world’s healthiest centenarians and identified 9 common practices that seem to aid in extreme longevity. He calls these practices “The Power Nine,” or the nine rules any person can follow in the hopes of emulating the world’s longest-living humans he studied in Sardinia, Okinawa, Costa Rica, and Loma Linda, California.
I’ve summarized Dan Buettner’s findings, which were reported in National Geographic Adventurer Magazine, so that you can use these secrets to raise your life expectancy and reach your peak of happiness.
The Power Nine: Secrets of long life from the world’s healthiest humans
1. Move: Find ways to stay active
Walking briskly each day promotes greater health and less long-term damage to your body than vigorous running or impact exercises which can cause chronic inflammation.
2. Plan de Vida: Discover your purpose in life
Take time to know what your values are and act out of those values each day. These are two important ingredients in the formula for happiness. We have measurable proof that happier people live longer than unhappy people.
3. Downshift: Take a break
Set aside time each day in which you de-stress in your favorite healthy way.
4. 80% Rule: Don’t overeat
In Okinawa they say hara hachi bu, which means eat until you are 80 percent full. How can you consciously cut out 20 percent of your calories? For one thing, eat off of lunch-size plate at dinner—as Okinawans do.
5. Plant Power: Choose greens
Learn how to prepare plant-based meals, only adding meat or fish a couple times each week.
Plant and care for your own garden, to organically nourish and exercise your body, mind, spirit as you tend to your garden each day.
6. Red Wine: A glass a day
A Sardinian red wine has triple the antioxidants of other known wines. Many Sardinians drink their red wine daily and enjoy healthy lives past age ninety.
7. Belong: Stay social
Stay connected with family and friends during meals or daily activities.
8. Beliefs: Get ritualistic
A weekly walk in nature with friends is a ritual that promotes health and builds community.
9. Your Tribe: Choose wisely
Cut out the toxic people in your life and spend time and effort augmenting your social circle with people who have the right values and a healthy lifestyle.
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