ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Greece Longevity Secrets

Updated on June 4, 2018
elayne001 profile image

Ruth, a.k.a. Elayne Kongaika, was raised in the orchard town of Orem, Utah. She married a Polynesian and has had amazing travel experiences.

Ikaria city - longevity
Ikaria city - longevity


A remote Greek Island reveals the secrets to living longer. It is amazing that one-third of the population of a mountainous, 99-square-mile island in Greece called Ikaria, are 90 years of age and older.

In contrast, current U.S. Census stats indicate that only one in nine baby boomers will reach 90.

Investigations into the remarkable longevity of these Greek islanders have proven very interesting. Not only do they live longer, but they have 20 percent less cases of cancer than Americans and about half the rate of heart disease as well as one-ninth the rate of diabetes. They have virtually no Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.


A Greek immigrant to the United States from Ikaria was given only a few months to live after having been diagnoses with abdominal cancer in Pennsylvania. He left his job as a bridge painter and returned to his native island to die. Thirty-nine years later, Yiannis Karimalis had outlived all the doctors who had predicted his death.

What do they have that the states don’t? Most of the villages on this small island are inland, high up on the rocky slopes. There are radioactive hot springs there which are believed to relieve pain and to cure skin ailments and joint problems.

A team interviewed several hundred-year-old Ikarians to determine what they had eaten most of their lives. It was found that besides diet, their lifestyle also played an important part in their longevity.

There are more than 150 varieties of will greens that grow on Ikaria. It was determined that some of them have more than ten times the level of antioxidants in red wine. They love to sip herbalteas like wild mint, chamomile daily.



Ikarians do not worry about time. They get things done on their own time. Because of this, they have much less stress and do not suffer as much from arthritis or other stress related problems. They also rest when they are tired. Most Ikarian villagers take afternoon naps. It has been proven that a regular half hour nap decreases the risk of heart disease.

Because of their mountain terrain, Ikarians walk most of the time, so they get quite a workout when they travel to a neighboring village. They also develop strong social connections, which is proven to lower depression, weight and mortality. Their diet is high in whole grains, vegetables, fruits, olive oil and fish. They eat very little red meat.


Honey from Ikaria contains anticancer, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties and is eaten often. Ikarians consume more olive oil that most of the world. After their foodis cooked, they drizzle a bit more oil on it before it is consumed. This restores the oil's healthful properties that heating destroys.

Perhaps another secret is their baked sourdough bread which is high in complex carbohydrates which may stave off diabetes and improve glucose metabolism. They eat fruits and vegetables fresh from their gardens.

Instead of drinking cows milk, the people of Ikaria drink goat’s milk most of their lives. This milk is rich in antibacterial compounds as well as a blood-pressure lowering hormone called tryptophan.

Most Ikarian residents are religious and they attend church services, another issue that has been linked to longer life spans.

If there is a fountain of youth, it looks like it may be in Greece. We have much to gain from learning more about these interesting people of Ikaria.


© 2009 Elayne

Comments

Submit a Comment
  • elayne001 profile imageAUTHOR

    Elayne 

    9 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Thanks for commenting sligobay. That is a good question - they might live longer is they stay off the internet - and keep walkin' - we could use more, I am sure. Aloha.

  • sligobay profile image

    sligobay 

    9 years ago from east of the equator

    hello my new Hawaain friend. I'm following you now and appreciate the follow by you. Longevity is a great subject for a great article. The info and photos are terrific. I wonder if they have internet. Cheers.

  • elayne001 profile imageAUTHOR

    Elayne 

    9 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Thanks glendoncaba. Jamaica must be beautiful. Sorry to hear about the high crime. I appreciate your comments.

  • glendoncaba profile image

    glendoncaba 

    9 years ago from Somewhere in the hubverse

    Fantastic hub. Makes me appreciate some of the blessings here in Jamaica. Unfortunately, our high crime rate brings on more stress.

  • elayne001 profile imageAUTHOR

    Elayne 

    9 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    You and me both CMHypno. Sounds great.

  • CMHypno profile image

    CMHypno 

    9 years ago from Other Side of the Sun

    Well I know where I'm going to spend my retirement - hot springs, herb tea and honey. Heaven! Book me a place on that ferry!. Great hub elayne001.

  • elayne001 profile imageAUTHOR

    Elayne 

    10 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Thanks Money Glitch. I appreciate your approval of my hub to be linked to yours. Your the best!

  • Money Glitch profile image

    Money Glitch 

    10 years ago from Texas

    This is a great hub elayne001, thanks so much for letting me know about it. I'm glad that you left your url link in the comments of my hub and honored that you've referenced my link here. Thanks again and I'm rating it up for you! :)

  • elayne001 profile imageAUTHOR

    Elayne 

    10 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    You are so right Katrina. Life is too short to stress. Let's chill! Or we could move to Ikaria Greece!

  • Katrina Ariel profile image

    Katrina Ariel 

    10 years ago from The Highlands of British Columbia, Canada

    Elayne,

    Great hub! Every time I read about a treasured nook on the earth where people live a very long time there are a few things in common: healthy food (homemade, with lots of greens and fresh produce), clean air and water, a natural area that encourages daily exercise, and a laid-back attitude. We in the 'modern' really need to chill out, eh? :)

  • elayne001 profile imageAUTHOR

    Elayne 

    10 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Thanks breakfastpop. I will too.

  • breakfastpop profile image

    breakfastpop 

    10 years ago

    Really fascinating hub. Thanks for the information. I try to incorporate some of these secrets into my own life.

  • elayne001 profile imageAUTHOR

    Elayne 

    10 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    That's true. If only we would convince ourselves to eat less meat, we might live a little longer.

  • profile image

    Liana 

    10 years ago

    Very interesting :). You know...Tongans don't care much about time either :).

  • profile image

    isi 

    10 years ago

    I am going to walk every where from now on. My grandfather was a walker and apparently that did not help him live longer because he loved his meat. Yea it is all about our life style and I need to find some new friends who are not as heavy as I am. Thanks for the life saving information. You are a life saver.

  • Bail Up ! profile image

    Bail Up ! 

    10 years ago

    Really liked this hub. I'm listening to the music as I type - I think my stress level dropped :)

working

This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

Show Details
Necessary
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Features
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Marketing
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Statistics
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)