Blue Zones and what we are learning from them.  Blue Zones are areas in the world identified by a National Geographic study as the areas in the world where people live the longest and keep their cognizance into old age.  They all have certain things in common.  We should live by these health principles to live long and thrive.

There are some key elements that contribute to health, long term health, and healthy longevity.

1. Community

All the Blue Zones have strong communities. Some are people that have been connected for life, most have a faith-based connection. Sometimes multi-generations live together. These communities share a sense of purpose with their members. They are people that support each other throughout life.

2. Diet

All the Blue Zones eat a healthy, toxin free diet. Most are vegetarian, with some fish, and sometimes very small portions of meat twice a week. Common foods that are eaten in Blue Zones are organic and include olive oil (make sure it is real), lots of greens, coffee(organic), chickpeas, legumes, green tea, tomatoes, turmeric, sweet potatoes, salmon, squash and avocados.

3. Cook

Eating out is celebratory only. Food is made in the home and eaten in their family community. Food is never eaten standing up, or in the car. Plates are made in the kitchen and taken to the table. People in blue zones stop eating when they are 80% full.

4. Drink

The Blue Zones drink water. They don’t drink sodas, with sugar or fake sugar, they drink water. And at the end of the day they have one glass of wine.

5. Treats

Blue Zones keep healthy food accessible and ready to eat on upper shelves in their fridge. Junk food is put away in a cabinet marked ‘junk” and it is hard to reach. You eat what you see, and you eat what is convenient. Make the foods easy to eat freshly cut veggies and fruit.

6. Mind

Blue Zones have people with active minds. They are constantly learning: a new language, a new musical instrument, a new science. Often people in blue zones meditate.

7. Sleep

People in Blue Zones get 7 or more hours of sleep. The bedroom is used for sleep or sex. No TV, No Phone, No clock. The room is kept cool.

8. Movement

People in Blue Zones move naturally. They walk everywhere. They ride bikes for transportation. They get up and down to change the TV Channel; they do outdoor chores; and they garden. They have pets that they walk.