In this series I will share with you a synopsis of the latest scientific studies from the most prestigious institutions and credible minds revealing the Secrets to Aging Well.  The secrets of keeping your mind sharp, your body active and living longer than you thought possible.

Today, the fastest growing segment of the world’s population are people who are living past 100 years and they are healthier and happier than ever.  So how are so many people staying healthy and leading active lives and what’s their secret?  Is it medical intervention?  Genetics?  Better food choices?  What common traits do these centenarians share and what can we learn from them?

The Danish Twin Studies established that less than 25% of how long the average person lives is predicated by genes.  In other words, most of how long and how well you live is not predetermined, but up to you.

National Geographic writer Dan Buettner teamed up with the best researchers and scientists and found 5 ‘hot spots’ where people live to over 100 years at a higher rate than average.  These areas have been labeled ‘Blue Zones’.  These 5 ‘hot spots’ are:  Okinawa, Japan, Sardinia, Italy, Loma Linda, California, Nicoya, Costa Rica and Ikaria, Greece.  Scientists and demographers have studied the lives of these centenarians and identified many common healthy traits and life practices that may contribute to a longer than average and healthier life span, 10 times longer than in the United States.

It was determined that the number one Secret to Ageing Well is to maintain a healthy weight.

Centenarians studied are of average weight and reportedly always have been.  So are the centenarians living in these Blue Zones just a healthy weight or is there something is their diet that is different, considering these hot spots are all over the planet?

Well they have found these diets include a lot fruit and vegetables, lean meat and fish.  And this diet helps them maintain a healthy weight

Being overweight not only upsets the chemical balances in our bodies but stresses the very limits of the basic mechanism for life, the cell.  The cell, with its simple design but complex function.  This is where life starts, or starts to go awry, depending on whether is gets what is need to support life.  If it doesn’t get all that it needs it doesn’t work as efficiently and burn’s out faster.  Today’s diet of grains, fatty meats and dairy, along with a more sedentary lifestyle are wreaking havoc on the cells, contributing to heart disease, which is presently the number one cause of death in both men and women in North America.

So what do you do if your overweight?  According to the National Weight Registry the easiest way to loose weight is to eat less (and it doesn’t even matter if you change what you eat or if you exercise).  So that’s fairly easy to do, not having to change anything drastic, just eating less.  Getting to a reasonable weight for your body frame is the goal.  Adopting the fruit, vegetable, lean meat and fish diet has been determined to be the common diet of centenarians and the common diet of centenarians living in Blue Zones.  It could be the secret to a long, healthy life.