Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, you will think to yourself: what does all this have to do with this health blog? After all, a healthy mind lives in a healthy body – it needs more to function well: in addition to exercise, proper nutrition is just as important as mental input (education, social contacts, spirituality, faith).
A new study explains the link between poor nutrition and low life expectancy – what a surprise! 😉 More interesting is the connection to the damage to the environment.
And then there are the “Blue Zones” – places where people stay old and vital above average.
The following questions arise:
- What does the modern way of eating and living do to us?
- Are there alternatives?
- What are blue zones and are people really getting that old there?
- How do they move and what do they eat?
- What can be deduced from this – is 10 steps on how to get to a long and happy life!
- Have fun reading!
Modern nutrition harms people and the environment
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, American researchers David Tilman and Michael Clark from the University of Minnesota published a study in the journal “Nature”. It is about the fact that the increasing spread of the Western diet endangers the health of the population as well as that of our planet.
The fact that a diet with a lot of meat, oil and sugar reduces life expectancy has already been well researched. I find the impact on the environment much more interesting: the Western diet also requires intensive, environmentally harmful agriculture.
If this trend continues, it will also make a significant contribution to increasing greenhouse gas emissions from total food production by an estimated 80 percent by 2050. According to the authors, they currently cause about a quarter of the world’s greenhouse gases, with the livestock industry being particularly important in this regard.
Rising incomes and urbanization are leading to a change in global food habits. The traditional dishes are replaced by dishes with a higher percentage of meat and “empty” calorie foods with high energy content, but few nutrients. *cough*mäcci*cough*
This directly promotes diabetes (type II diabetes), coronary heart disease, cancer, and other chronic diseases that reduce life expectancy.
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, Indirectly, i.e. via the food industry, there are increasing greenhouse gas emissions, increased deforestation, and the associated extinction of species, the authors explain.
So much for the status quo – but what’s next?
Are there alternatives?
The so-called “blue zones” are places where people live an average of 10 years longer and are also much less ill during their lifetime. People over 90 and 100 are not uncommon… and they are vital and full of strength until death.
How do they do that?!
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, The discovery of the blue zones is accompanied by in-depth research by journalist Dan Buettner. He identified 5 such zones scattered all over the Earth. That is, they did not exchange ideas about their habits, but they originated historically.
The places are:
- Ikaria, Greece (islanders)
- Loma Linda, California (Adventist Community)
- Sardinia, Italy (islanders)
- Okinawa, Japan (islanders)
- Nicoya, Costa Rica
Similarities of the blue zones in terms of nutrition
- A mainly vegetarian diet (meat a few times a month, or mainly fish)
- No overheating (you stop eating when you are full)
- Local food (they grow what they consume)
- Carbohydrate-heavy nutrition
- Beans/legumes are consumed very often
- 3 of the 5 regularly drink coffee (I like these people!)
- 4 of the 5 regularly drink alcohol (red wine)
Other, very important similarities of all Blue Zones
- A lot of exercises (physical work)
- Enough sleep
- A solution for dealing with stress
- Social involvement (they live with and around the family, are involved in religious groups, drink together, take care of the neighborhood, and maintain friendships)
- Are hardly worried (Are mainly self-sufficient and socially integrated)
- Satisfaction (Are grateful for what you have)
- Meaning in life (Know your task, have meaning in life, through social integration – are “needed”)
The 10 Steps to a Long, Contented Life
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, The researchers who looked closely at the “Blue Zones” identified 9 steps to a long and happy life, and the 10th I found appropriate. They are actually quite “logical” if you think about it in more detail. Very nicely described here is the connection between exercise, nutrition, and mind which is exactly the topic of this blog.
These are empirically researched steps and created by smarter people than me. There are also things about which you read, hear and see in the media again and again. There is probably a reason for this and you should probably take the time to think about it in more detail…
1.) Natural movement
People in these zones do not pump iron, do not run marathons, or even climb mountains. They work in the garden, take care of the animals, take care of the household, and do not sit in the office all day.
Note: For us city dwellers, going to the fitness center makes perfect sense because our society is built on service and otherwise we lack physical activity.
2.) Meaning in life
Why do you wake up in the morning? What drives you? What is your motivation?
Meaning in life adds about 7 years of a lifetime!
3.) Relieve stress
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, Even the people in the blue zones experience stress. Stress leads to chronic inflammation, which is associated with every major age-related disease. The people in the zones have developed routines for this: people in Okinawa commemorate some time of their ancestors every day, the Adventists pray daily, the Greeks (Ikaria) sleep a lap and those in Sardinia celebrate their “happy hour”.
A daily break, whether prayer, walk, nap, or anything else is therefore strongly recommended.
4.) Comply with the 80% rule
Stop eating when you’re 80% full. The body still gets all the nutrients, only this 20% from “almost full” to “full” could make the difference between gaining weight and losing weight.
5.) Eat legumes
These plants are often (wrongly) suspected to be unhealthy. The fact is that the people of the Blue Zones consume them regularly. Please do not buy cans now but buy the dried beans, lentils, and peas!
6.) Drink wine (woohoo)
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, All but the Adventists drink wine regularly and moderately. The thing I’ve always known: Moderate drinkers don’t survive-drinkers. No more than one or two glasses per day – preferably together with friends or while eating.
Note: don’t drink anything all week and then whipping it in full on the weekend doesn’t work – good try, bastard!
7.) Community of faith
All five zones belong to some religious community. The denomination may not have played a role in this. Faith brings 4-14 years of life to it.
An interesting point! In fact, believing in God not only helps me in everyday life (less stress and worries), but also provides more meaning in life and promotes social contacts. (Item 8)
By the way: people in monasteries and religious orders in Europe also live an average long and healthy life – but they were not included in this study.
8.) Family comes first
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, The people of the zones put the family first. This means that they keep aging parents and grandparents close or in the home (in addition, this lowers the illness and mortality of children in the home). You commit to a life partner (which can add up to 3 years of life expectancy) and invest in your children with time and love (this will make the children more likely to take care of you when the time comes).
9.) Finding the right strain
The world’s longest-lived people choose or are born in circles that support a healthy lifestyle. The people of Okinawa form themselves into “Moais”. These are groups of five friends who are committed to live. Research from the Framingham studies shows that smoking, obesity, happiness, and even loneliness are contagious. Thus, the social networks of long-lived people are characterized by positive health behavior.
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, These groups live according to certain cycles, rituals, rhythms, and orders. By their activities, they are often tied to seasons, tides, and seasons. They also feed seasonally. This means that they live very strongly WITH nature – not in the opposite and hectic way as we do in the West. Order not only provides a certain calmness but also orientation in life because it sets a direction.
Conclusion: Creating unity between body, mind, and soul
To make it to 100 years, you must have already won the genetic lottery. But most of us are able to make it well into our early 90s and make it largely without chronic diseases.
Roughly speaking, one could increase the life expectancy of the average person by 10-12 years by imitating a “blue zones” lifestyle. And if you do not get so old, you will still stay healthy and vital for much longer.
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, Man is a unity of body, mind, and soul. The body needs restore to exercise, nutrition, and mental input (religion, social contacts, education) in order to function properly.
We should take this into account and at least approximate the lifestyle.
Then we will not only be blessed with a long and healthy life, but we will also be happier and happier.
I think this is worth trying!
FITNESS COACH LUNDEN: WITH THESE 8 STRATEGIES I STAY FIT WHILE TRAVELING
I like to travel for my life! I especially love exploring new places as I walk. I also think it’s great to go hiking in a new environment or to do a bodyweight workout in the fresh air – no matter where I am in the world. My happiness is that I travel a lot both for work and in my free time.
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, So it may be that I have to get to the airport quickly to hold a workout in Tokyo. Or I jump on the next train to Munich for the LIVE workout party. Of course, I also like to fly to the USA to visit my family: I love being on the move all the time!
However, if you are in another country, waiting at the airport, or traveling by train, it is not always easy with fitness: it can sometimes even be quite difficult to stay in shape, pay attention to your energy level and live healthily. Jet lag can also be a problem for you; stress and lack of sleep from traveling can mess you up properly. You may then feel hungrier than you actually are and tired, lazy, and unmotivated.
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, How do I manage to stay in training on the go, eat healthily, and still have fun? You will find out in this post. Of course, it’s perfectly fine if you enjoy your holiday to the fullest. However, if you travel frequently on business, you can’t completely throw your fitness program overboard every time – otherwise, you probably won’t reach your goals.
1. DRINK ENOUGH
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, Of course, we all know that it is important to drink enough. But do you really take this seriously? If you want to know what your water requirement is, go from 30 to 35 ml per kg of body weight. Then add another 500 to 1000 ml per hour of physical activity (especially if you sweat a lot!). I get about three liters of water a day on this bill; including workouts. When I travel, I make four liters of it. So I stay active, focused, and feel energized. In addition, I also have to move regularly on the plane or train, because I have to go to the toilet again and again.
2. GIVE UP THE FOOD SERVED ON THE PLANE
This is my very personal tip. I have never understood why pasta, chips, and sweets are applied when everyone is just sitting for hours. When you travel, your digestion can also get out of whack. It is certainly not helpful to eat too much! Just take fruits and vegetables with you on the plane (preferably varieties with high water content, such as cucumbers) and nuts if your flight takes longer.
3. ALWAYS BE GUIDED BY THE TIME ZONE OF YOUR PLACE OF ARRIVAL
I once saw an interview with professional golfers who talked about how they consistently perform strongly despite traveling. They are constantly in changing time zones. Her best tip was to fast on the plane, drink an extremely large amount of water, and, after arriving at the destination, eat the meal that is currently waiting there. I’ve been doing this for a few years now – and it really helps me! If you overeat on the plane, you arrive tired and have no energy at all. Of course, this one exuberant meal will not yet perfectly adjust your internal clock to the new time. But it can at least make it easier for you to adapt to your new rhythm.
4. MOVEMENT, MOVEMENT, MOVEMENT
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, You don’t have to return to your usual gym or bodyweight routine immediately after your arrival. But try to be active in some way right away – no later than the day after. Go for a walk, run, bike or mobilize your hips with a little yoga. Stiff muscles, overexertion, and fatigue are not a good combination – pour out endorphins first!
5. PLAN A SNACK
A small supply of fruits, vegetables, nuts, nut butter, hard-boiled eggs, etc. is ideal for staying full even between meals. I personally love a great breakfast. So I eat extensively in the morning at the hotel or restaurant. At lunch, there is then a small snack (groceries from the supermarket) and finally dinner with friends, colleagues, or business partners.
6. GIVE UP THE TAXI
Explore the new city on foot! If possible, try to attend your business meetings without a taxi, bus or tram. Also, go for a walk afterward – it really brings a lot! I was in Madrid just recently to hold a LIVE workout party. Every day we managed to track over 20,000 steps – just because we explored the city on foot and did not spend money on taxis. Although I usually train five to six times a week, my legs hurt afterward – a complete success 😉
7. YOU DON’T HAVE TO TRY THE WHOLE MENU
Eat Move Make Food Fitness Travel Lifestyle, I know it’s exciting to get to know the local cuisine in a new country. The problem: almost always you will sit back at the end and moan: “Oh man, I’m full – I ate too much!” If you want to try something new, share it with someone. You should not order five dishes for yourself alone if it’s enough to take one or two together. If there is something on the menu that you really want to try, try it tomorrow! Try to really think like that. These delicious dishes will not suddenly disappear from the menu until tomorrow – I promise you!
8. ARRIVE AT YOUR DESTINATION CORRECTLY
Put your phone aside and look around. Come right to your new place of residence. It’s nice here, isn’t it? Traveling can be quite stressful, even if you are on vacation. So enjoy the fresh air, listen to the birds singing and look at the people. Be there with body and soul!
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