Blue zone diet – With so many diet and nutrition fads out there, it’s hard to find one that actually works for you.
Many of them have elements or aspects that are great, some can even present net benefits, while others are simply snake-oil or unfounded claims.
It seems everyone is jumping on a health trend of some sort. But few people are truly gaining full optimal benefits from all that is available.
Chronic illness, metabolic syndrome and age-related degeneration of the quality of life is all too common nowadays, even in the most developed countries
Few people have the ability to improve their health span due to their limited access to good nutrition and lifestyle habits, few people, except for those in a Blue Zone.
A blue zone is a population cluster with an above-average healthy elderly population and a high life expectancy in correlation.
Common geographic hubs for blue zones are many Mediterranean populations as well as Japan and parts of South America, specifically in Costa Rica.
A blue zone diet can also be characterized by certain cultures or traditions that adhere to lifestyle customs that allow for healthy, long-living population distribution.
An example of this is the Seventh Day Adventist Christian denomination.
What makes all these cultures have a common advantage in longevity is their attitude towards nutrition.
Many western developed population groups, in spite of all the advances and developments meant to enhance the quality of life, have fallen terribly short when it comes to nutrition.
Excessive industrial processing and the meat-heavy diet has led more to a decline in life quality than an improvement.
Blue Zone groups have largely avoided the reliance on convenient, industrial processing for their food sources, preferring to continue relying on naturally sourced whole foods and those that undergo natural processing methods for the most part.
They also have a more natural level of meat and animal product consumption as most of the animal-sourced foods come from more subsistence or wild sources than large scale commercial.
So not only are they eating less animal-sourced foods, the ones they do eat are either wild-caught or completely organic.
So it seems living a Blue Zone Life can be quite beneficial, that’s why we want to introduce you to this way of eating and living so you can decide if it works for you.
The blue zone diet consists of a large quantity of natural whole foods, especially fruits, vegetables, seeds, and grains.
It is also very fish and seafood-focused in many cases.
This grants access to an abundance of healthy antioxidants such as polyphenols and flavonoids on all the essential vitamins and minerals present in such foods.
This also gives access to much healthy mono and polyunsaturated fats.
But what does this have to do with age defiance?
Well, as far as antioxidants are concerned, they help slow down the dying off of cells due to oxidative stress.
Your body’s cells go through a life cycle where they are created and then die off to later be replaced.
The rate of cellular genesis is generally higher than the rate at which cells die from the beginning of your life up until your middle age. During this time, cells start to die off at a rate faster than they replicate.
This is exacerbated by oxidative stress, which accelerates cell death, so by the effect of antioxidants, you can reduce to rate of the aging process.
As for unsaturated fats, they have a cardioprotective and neuroprotective quality, both essential components of health in order to achieve longevity.
One of the greatest scourges of modern living is a chronic illness.
Like a dull nagging shackle holding you down from achieving your life’s full potential, chronic illness is a discouraging and sometimes debilitating feature of too many people’s lives.
Many chronic illnesses can be traced back to an inflammatory response or a metabolic issue, one that has persisted and remains as a vice grip around someone’s lifestyle.
An interesting feature amongst blue zoners is their relatively low prevalence of chronic illness, especially those associated with inflammation or metabolic syndrome.
Obesity and diabetes are very rare and inflammatory illnesses such as arthritis are quite uncommon too.
This can be attributed to the diet once again, a diet that features way less processed junk and way more health-boosting nutrients than the typical western diet.
The blue zone diet is also quite neuro and cardio-protective as we mentioned, meaning there is less prevalence of neurological illnesses or cardiovascular diseases.
This allows people the potential to maintain a healthier state for longer through their lives, while also giving them the opportunity to be more active and independent, adding even more value to their way of living.
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Another important feature of blue zone living is the fact they they are, on average, more physically active than other population groups with similar GDPs or economic standings.
That’s because of the nature of their lifestyle and diets demands more actual effort with regards to physical labor.
Want a pale of milk? You will have to squat down and milk it yourself.
Want seafood for dinner? Then you better go out and fish.
Everything from slaughtering and preparing meat, to harvesting crops and all the surrounding processes, use minimal mechanical input.
That leaves manpower to handle a lot of the daily tasks.
This physically active lifestyle gives blue zoners a real health boost when it comes to daily life and long term health. Evidence shows that physical activity is strongly linked to longevity, and the Blue Zone seems to be a testament to that.
Blue Zone living is there for you to enjoy, you don’t need to be part of a population or community that does it, although it would make it easier since living in such communities necessitates a blue zone approach.
But all you have to do is learn the dietary stipulations of vegetables, nuts, whole grains, and legumes, with minimal wild or organic meat and animal products. Intermittent fasting and a focus on clean hydration and very moderate alcohol consumption are also good to remember.
Lastly, regular, functional exercise and maintenance of cardio fitness are important in order to round off the Blue Zone Effect.