Stress is inevitable, but how we handle it, is so important. It is something we should try to avoid.

There are various ways, but in specific places in the country Sardinia, stress is kept in check by the sense of community and that good old fashioned sense of humour. People do not take themselves too seriously there, and they all enjoy a hearty laugh at their own expense.

In Loma Linda, the Sabbath plays the special role of keeping stress to a minimum. The Sabbath is an opportunity to find time for others and for family, to give back and to laugh. Laughter is extremely healthy; it decreases the risk of heart attacks and lowers blood pressure. It’s also just relaxing and a good way to overcome stress.

Sex is another great stress reducer.

In places in Costa Rica, people have very liberal attitudes toward sex, and many have children out of wedlock. This sexual liberation makes them more relaxed and helps keep stress levels down.

Aside from cultural disposition, physical activity offers a great means of cutting stress. Not in the sense of gym training, but rather as a natural part of your everyday life.

In Sardinia, most centenarians either were or are shepherds, and their job requires them to walk roughly six miles per day.

In Loma Linda, they undertake all kinds of activity throughout the day – things like walking, swimming and hiking, all of which exercise the body in different ways.

This natural physical activity has the added benefit of increased exposure to the sun. Exposure to the sun produces vitamin D, which works against many types of cancer and diabetes. This is why there are so many healthier and more independent centenarians in Okinawa than in the United States or Europe – they literally live on the sunnier side of the world!


Dan Buettner

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