Veteran – What do Centenarian's eat?

centenarian is a person who lives to or beyond the age of 100 years.  People who live long healthy lives fascinate me!  I remember reading years ago on the HUNZA’s. A group of people who live in the northernmost part of Pakistan, where six mountain ranges converge.  They live in an extraordinary fertile valley that for hundreds of years has been in complete isolation from the rest of the world.  Until recently, to get to the Hunza Valley was near impossible because the only way in was an extremely dangerous trail winding through the mountains and in some places this trail was only two feet wide (it has been called “The most dangerous road in the world”). 

Back before the modern world and the modern DIET showed it’s face to these people, The Hunza’s lived LONG and Healthy lives…many reaching 100+.  The most important detail about these people, is that they were DISEASE FREE!

I read the book “Hunza: Secrets of the World’s Healthiest and Oldest Living People” written by Jay Milton Hoffman.  In the 1960’s Dr. Jay Hoffman was asked by the U.S. National Geriatric Society to go to Hunza and study the health and longevity of this isolated people.  He wrote,

Down through the ages, adventurers and utopia-seeking men have fervently searched the world for the Fountain of Youth but didn’t find it.  However unbelievable as it may seem, a Fountain of Youth does exist high in the Himalayan Mountains…Here is a land where people do not have common diseases, such as heart ailments, cancer (cancer is unknown), arthritis, high blood pressure, diabetes, tuberculosis, hay fever, asthma, liver trouble, gall bladder trouble, constipation, or many other ailments that plague the rest of the world.  Moreover, there are no hospitals, not insane asylums, no drug stores, no saloons, no tobacco stores, no police, no jails, no crimes, no murders and no beggars.

So you want to know what these people ate???


– They consume very little meat (they have minimal pastureland) except on rare feast days.
– Meat and dairy products together constitute only 1 percent of their total diet.
 Protein and fat are almost entirely of vegetable origin.
 They depend entirely on natural foods rather than processed and manufactured ones.
 They eat substantial amounts of whole grains: wheat, barley, millet and buckwheat.
 Vegetables also play a prominent role, particularly DARK LEAFY GREENS (mustard greens, spinach and lettuce) and also root vegetables, beans and legumes that can be sprouted.
 They grow Flaxseeds; almost every meal contains freshly ground flaxmeal in one form or another.
 A large part of their diet is eaten uncooked, in the summer, as much as 80 percent of the food is eaten in its natural state.
– Vegetables are picked just prior to consumption and almost always eaten raw.
– In the winter, they soak their lentils and beans and eat them sprouted.
– When vegetables are cooked they are typically lightly steamed using minimal amount of water.
 THEY EAT A LOW CALORIE, WHOLE FOOD PLANT BASED DIET (overall daily calories 1,900)
(All taken from the book- “HEALTHY AT 100”)

This doesn’t sound like the standard american diet…not even close!  But it’s amazing to me what eating PLANTS can do for your health and longevity.  Want to learn more…definitely check out John Robbins book: Healthy at 100!


Source: WFM 1-10

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