Okinawa

Okinawa is a small island with an area of about 1201 kilometers squared. It is located 400 miles off the south coast of Japan, and has the same distance from it to China. Okinawa is reputed for several reasons; it has a beautiful seafront which makes for an excellent vacation spot, and interestingly enough, is well known for having a population with exceptionally long lifespans. While there are several theories as to how indigenous Okinawans enjoy such a long lifespan, we will discuss the prevalent two. The first is their diet, which involves smaller amounts of rice than the Japanese standard, and 30% of the sugar that Japanese diets usually have. They also avoid eating large amounts of calories, primarily consuming foods that have 0.8 or less calories per gram without any major concern for quantity.

The second explanation for their longevity is the concept of Ikigai, or the purpose for living. From the Blue Zones project, a women named Yasu Itoman gives her own Ikigai as simply living; the focus of her life's goal on living long. While this might seem paradoxical, her daughter explains it as being a matter of pride for the Okinawan reputation for longevity and vitality; even though she's tired, she lives on to make the village and her family proud, even though she's "tired".

Comment Stream