Experts who have visited places that are designated as blue zones and who have interviewed people living there said the secrets to living long lives are not found in pills, vitamins or supplements.
National Geographic writer Dan Buettner compiled the nine commonly known tips from people in every known blue zone culture for his book about the blue zones. Those tips are:
- Move naturally
- Cut calories
- Avoid eating processed foods and meat
- Drink alcohol, red wine, in particular, in moderation
- Keep your family first
- Reduce your stress levels
- Belong to a community
- Maintain a positive outlook
- Surround yourself with people who have the same kind of blue zone values as you have
In Sardinia, for instance, sheepherders spend a good deal of their time walking, and inhabitants frequently drink red wines that are rich in polyphenols, which are antioxidants that slow the aging process. Residents of Okinawa are known to drink mugwort sake, to remain active and to honor the elderly. Indeed, the majority of extended families either lives together or lives close by. On the Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Ricans make a living as farmers. They also drink large quantities of red wine. In the only blue zone in the United States -- Loma Linda, Calif. - a large population of Seventh-Day Adventists has developed a close community. They maintain strict diets and remain healthy, even though they live near the smoggy, densely populated city of Los Angeles.