Okinawan Longevity: Genetics, Diet or Lifestyle?

Rationale – Okinawa, a place in Japan pertaining to a collection of small islands, has become popular among scientists, health buffs and the world in general because of one unique characteristic: longevity. This is the age wherein the scientific study focuses on areas affecting gerontological aspects like comparative aging and the analysis of factors that contribute to ideal or non-ideal aging. Okinawa and the unique state of longevity of many of its centenarians and old people has become a source of wonder for professionals studying the process of aging, and more importantly, the process of aging as well.

While Okinawa is not the sole place, it can be considered as a Meccah which can hold the answers to questions that now hound people, especially with the rising trend in health problems resulting from bad lifestyle characteristics. This appears to be a non-existent problem in Okinawa, thus, resulting to the Okinawan longevity. The review of available literature published worldwide would reveal that the three main reasons being investigated by professionals as well as by the academe focused on this issue in lieu of being able to explain the longevity of Okinawan people include genetics, diet and lifestyle.

There are indeed many professionals laying proof for each of these factors. In the end, it appears that the sole difference separating the Okinawan from other people is diet – what they eat and how. While lifestyle and genetics may indeed play a part, more and more focus points to the analysis and study of diet as the key to unlocking the explanation behind the Okinawan longevity. Thesis statement – There has never been any claim that there is just one sole key to the Okinawan longevity. Science has always pointed out to many different prevailing reasons and components resulting to the state of longevity unique to the Okinawan people.

Despite the presence of several factors contributing to the longevity, what stands out is the fact that diet, or what these people eat, is one of the major factors if not the major factor itself, explaining this unique Okinawan longevity phenomenon. I. Introduction The Okinawan longevity is one of the most intensively studied aspects because people want to know what makes people capable of living a lot longer and healthier at the same time. Researchers have tried to see if the Okinawan longevity is because of genetics, lifestyle or diet.

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