The Insider’s Guide to Healthy Hawaii: The Secrets to Living Longer

Medically reviewed in February 2022

What's the secret to a longer, healthier life? If you were offered the chance to live an extra five, ten or more years, and remain healthy and active, wouldn’t you take it? The great news is you have that opportunity—and you don’t have to overhaul your entire life to do it. The secret to living longer and better can be found in the simple things you do every day, like the foods you eat, the company you keep, and your overall outlook on life.

Residents living in the original Blue Zones areas share common principles called Power 9®—these are healthy lifestyle habits that help them live longer, healthier, happier lives.

It all started when a team of researchers and scientists set out on a seven-year quest to uncover the secret to leading longer, healthier and happier lives. They discovered five places in the world, called Blue Zones® areas, where people enjoy active lives with less illness well into their golden years. Although each Blue Zones area has its own recipe for living longer, there are nine common ingredients that the people living in these communities share, which all contribute to their well-being. These nine powerful, but simple lifestyle behaviors focus on moving naturally, eating wisely, knowing your purpose and belonging to a social community. They are the Power 9® Principles:

  1. Move Naturally – Be active by walking, gardening and moving in other natural ways
  2. Know Your Purpose – Discover the meaning of your life
  3. Down Shift – Remember to slow down and get your rest
  4. 80% Rule – Stop eating when you’re 80 percent full
  5. Plant Slant – Eat more veggies, avoid meat and processed foods
  6. Wine @ Five – Enjoy one alcoholic beverage (preferably red wine!) per day
  7. Right Tribe – Find a healthy social network
  8. Belong – Be part of a spiritual community
  9. Family First – Make loved ones a priority

You, too, can boost your own well-being by applying the Power 9 Principles to your daily life. These are easy tips you can live by to help you get the most enjoyment out of life. The great news is, you don’t have to take on all nine of these lifestyle behaviors at once to enjoy their benefits. After all, improving your well-being is not about adding more to your “to do list,” or restricting yourself to “do this, not that.” It’s about simplifying and doing the little things that add more meaning to your life—like slowing down, spending time with the people you love, eating foods that give you energy and doing activities you enjoy.

More On

The Insider’s Guide to Healthy Hawaii: Peace, Harmony and Ikebana

article

The Insider’s Guide to Healthy Hawaii: Peace, Harmony and Ikebana
Whether I’m writing a blog or drawing a picture, there has to be a “first thing.” It’s that single initial step that gets the creative juices flowing ...
Blue Zones Project Hawaii

slideshow

Blue Zones Project Hawaii
In a community near you.
The Insider’s Guide to Healthy Hawaii: Three Quick and Dirty Fitness Secrets

article

The Insider’s Guide to Healthy Hawaii: Three Quick and Dirty Fitness Secrets
We’ve teamed up with Certified Personal Trainer and Strength and Conditioning Specialist Tim Rabetoy to learn three simple fitness secrets for getting...
Hawaii Health Alerts: Practicing Positive Self-Talk

article

Hawaii Health Alerts: Practicing Positive Self-Talk
Think about a time you did something embarrassing and beat yourself up about it. That little voice inside your head may have a big impact. Negative se...
The Insider’s Guide to Healthy Hawaii: How to Create Your Own Holiday Traditions

article

The Insider’s Guide to Healthy Hawaii: How to Create Your Own Holiday Traditions
One of my favorite things about the holidays is reliving the traditions my family has created over the years. When we were younger, my mom would wake ...