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Are You Practicing Hara Hachi Bu?

A few years ago in preparing for a lecture on diet and aging I ran across a study in National Geographic.  In it the researchers analyzed the diet and life style of three different populations where the people not only live longer lives, but longer, healthier lives.  The Italian Sardinia population, the southern Californian Seventh Day Adventist and the citizens from the Japanese island of Okinawa, who all have a large population of healthy centenarians, were part of the study.  So what common factors made these three seemingly unrelated groups connect?  All three reported putting family first (yea!), being physically active every day (good idea), staying socially engaged and eating plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole grains.  Amen to that. Continue reading