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Blue Zones

A naturopath was a guest speaker in one of my classes this week, and one of the things she talked about was a study on Blue Zones. These are the areas in the world where people live the longest and report the highest levels of well-being, and by studying them, they found 9 specific characteristics that are common in all these areas. Read about them here. Funniest thing is, what they found is what is essentially the simple life. The list includes making sure life isn’t too convenient (bad news for technology!) so that you don’t become lazy, daily de-stressing, eating to 80% full and not eating big meals in the evening (uh ohh..), and eating mostly plant matter with a little bit of meat sprinkled throughout the week (what our mothers always told us!).

There’s also a “happiness test” that you can take to see how happy you are with your life right now, and at the end of it, this was one of my Personalized Recommendations:

See the Sun:

Sunlight prompts the body to manufacture endorphins that give you a feeling similar to a runner’s high, and promotes the manufacture of vitamin D. Maximize your sunlight by creating outdoor areas for basking and big, south-facing windows for indoor sunlight. While it’s difficult to get enough quality sunlight through the window for vitamin D production, the filtered sunlight hitting your retina will still help raise your spirits.

Hard to do when I live in what is essentially a cave, albeit a super cheap, super nice cave. I’ll make up for my lack of vitamin D production by the 10 min walk to the bus stop every day. Goal of the year: don’t get S.A.D.


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October 2011
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