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Wednesday 20 February 2019
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20 Jun 2018
‘Blue Zone Communities’ to be explored at GWS

Dan Buettner – who identified the five places in the world where people live the longest, healthiest lives and founded Blue Zone wellness communities – will discuss the science of living longer at the Global Wellness Summit this October at the Technogym headquarters in Cesena, Italy.

Buettner is an explorer, National Geographic Fellow and best-selling author. He discovered what he termed “Blue Zones” – places where people regularly live and thrive to age 100.

Buettner is also the founder of the Blue Zone Projects, wellness communities across the US that design in key Blue Zone lessons learned and which have been successful in curbing obesity and smoking, and boosting overall quality of life and activity levels.

“Everyone in the wellness industry needs to understand the lessons from the Blue Zones, and Dan Buettner’s work is rapidly changing the ways the world thinks about health, wellness, happiness, prevention, aging and longevity,” said Susie Ellis, GWS chair and CEO.”This is real-world science that’s far more relatable than dry statistics. And how perfect that he will be with us in Italy, which is home to Sardinia, one of the five Blue Zone Regions where the whole Blue Zone story began.”

The first Blue Zone research (and the term itself) came from Dr Giovanni Pes, a physician/demographer who studied the southern Italian island of Sardinia, whose population boasted extraordinarily high life expectancies – including the highest concentration of male centenarians in the world.

Dr Pes, who will also present at the Summit, hypothesised that he would find a genetic variant supporting longevity there, but instead found that close family/social bonds, daily physical activity and a plant-based diet were key.

Buettner expanded the research, identifying four other regions beyond Sardinia where people statistically live the longest: Okinawa, Japan; Nicoya, Costa Rica; Icaria, Greece; and the Seventh-Day Adventist community in Loma Linda, California. His findings appeared in a National Geographic cover story, "The Secrets of a Long Life", which, like his article in the New York Times, are two of the most popular ever for the publications.

Buettner, with a team of medical researchers, anthropologists and demographers, spent eight years studying why Blue Zone populations lived so much longer and happier. He identified the Power 9, shared lifestyle behaviours that keep people thriving to 100: 1) moderate regular physical activity (not exercise, but natural movement) 2) life purpose 3) moderate caloric intake 4) plant-heavy diets 5) stress reduction 6) moderate alcohol 7) social engagement 8) strong family life, and 9) engagement in spirituality/religion.

Since 2010, Buettner has applied these nine lessons to new wellness community projects in the US called the Blue Zone Projects.

Blue Zone Project developers work with governments, employers, health insurance companies, schools, grocery stores, restaurants and engineers to help people naturally move more, eat wisely and connect with others. The results have been double-digit drops in obesity and smoking rates, along with impressive increases in activity levels. For example, the California Beach Cities Project saw a 14 per cent drop in obesity and a 30 per cent decrease in smoking rates across the entire community after just two years.

"The Global Wellness Summit is a major opportunity to refocus on the true causes of disease,” said Buettner. “For the first time in human history, people are not dying of overwork and hunger. In fact, over two-thirds of the world population will likely die from (largely avoidable) chronic disease brought on because we’ve engineered physical activity out of our lives and we consume too many of the wrong kind of calories. The key to improving world health – and living longer lives – is reshaping our environment to make the healthy choice the default for people everywhere.”



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19 Feb 2019
Elevate and ukactive tie the knot to strengthen event seminar programme
ukactive has signed a three-year partnership with physical activity trade show Elevate.
14 Feb 2019
IAAPA winter forum addresses crisis issues
Crisis management and public relations were mixed with water and wildlife as more than 60 attractions industry professionals from 14 countries attended trade association IAAPA’s EMEA Winter Forum in the Canary Islands, Spain, at the end of January 2019.
14 Feb 2019
Speakers announced for Women in Wellness event
The Women in Wellness Leadership Conference, set to take place on 12 March in New York City, has announced a host of speakers designed to motivate attendees and galvanise them to take charge of their careers and lead with confidence.
11 Feb 2019
AEG Facilities and SMG merge to create global venue management business
AEG Facilities and SMG has revealed plans to merge, creating a standalone global facility management and venue services company that will operate as ASM Global.
11 Feb 2019
Tokyo 2020 medals to be made from salvaged metals from recycled electronic devices
All medals at the Tokyo 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Games will be made from recycled electronic devices – such as discarded mobile phones, digital cameras, laptops and other handheld devices.
08 Feb 2019
Seven sports secure UK Sport funding to help with Tokyo 2020 plans
Seven sports will receive extra funding to support their plans for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
08 Feb 2019
Bryan Williams to receive the ISPA Dedicated Contributor Award
Dr Bryan Williams will be the recipient of the 2019 ISPA Dedicated Contributor Award. Williams is an international speaker and author who first spoke to ISPA members in 2006 and focuses on service excellence and leadership effectiveness.
05 Feb 2019
Chris Evans launches RunFestRun event
Radio DJ and media personality Chris Evans has launched a new running and music festival.
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