Aging Well, Books, Food, Link Ups

What’s On Your Bookshelf: The Blue Zone & Cookbook Edition

I’m that girl who tends to fall down rabbit holes. Very. Far. Down. My current rabbit hole began with this simple National Geographic Magazine.

I’d heard about Blue Zones before. Yup, those five longevity hotspots (Sardinia, Italy; Okinawa, Japan; Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica; Ikaria, Greece; and Loma Linda, California) where residents tend to live longer, healthier lives.

This simple read caused me to request from my library any Blue Zone book available. That seemed to be a good idea — until all of the books arrived at the same time. All of them! To add to my juggling challenge, Island Eats and Nothing Fancy (both books that I ordered months ago) also arrived on cue. Then, The Professor (my sole Amazon book order) was delivered in sync. Seriously, how does this happen?

I took a deep breath and systematically began to plow through each book. First up was Island Eats: Signature Chefs’ Recipes from Vancouver Island and the Salish Sea, written by Dawn Postnikoff and Joanne Sasvari.

Island Eats turned out to be a true gem (and a book that I will be requesting from Santa). It is part cookbook (with actual recipes from some of Vancouver Island’s top restaurants). It is also an invaluable map of our island’s regional cuisine, restaurants, chefs, and unique ingredients. In addition, it is promoted as a guide for culinary tourism.

Island Eats: Signature Recipes from Vancouver Island and the Salish Sea

Together, Richard and I made the Spicy Kung Pao Bowl from Glo Restaurant in Victoria. Richard diligently chopped veggies while I made the Szechuan sauce. The results were light, satisfying and delicious. We will undoubtedly make this one again. Other delights on my To Be Tried list include: Gnocchi with Roasted Squash and Beets (10 Acres Bistro), Roasted Broccolini with Romesco Sauce and Pecorino (Boom and Batten), Shakshuka (French Press Coffee Roasters, Coombs) and Sliced Almond Cinnamon Buns with Cream Cheese Frosting (Old Town Bakery, Ladysmith, my FAVOURITE bakery in the whole wide world)! And these are just a few of the recipes and restaurants included.

My next book to explore was Nothing Fancy: Recipes and Recollections of Soul Satisfying Food. Hilary of Positive Letters, Inspirational Stories recently recommended this book on her blog. Diana Kennedy is a well-known British Food Writer often referred to as ‘the Grand Dame of Mexican Cuisine.’ Unfortunately, I reserved this book with false expectations. For me, this was not a practical cookbook of simple (nor) Mexican cuisine. e.g. A recipe for Diana’s favourite meat, ‘Corned Tongue,’ needs to be started five days ahead of time. The ‘Jacques Pepin’s Headcheese begins with 1/2 pig’s head. These and many of her recipes were not to my (plant slant) tastes, nor did they accommodate my (slacker) style of cooking. First published in 1984, there are no recipe photos nor nutritional values included. And fat-free or dairy-free options? Fuggedaboutit! But, in terms of ‘recollections,’ this is truly an engrossing read. Diana proudly confesses that she had been tagged as the “scourge of gastronomy,” and she doesn’t hold back. If you read just one section, don’t miss ‘My Bête Noires.’ Kosher salt? Pedestrian. Brining? SO boring. Canola Oil? Banned from Quinta Diana. Chocolate chips added to oatmeal cookies? Sacrilege! Fiesty, opinionated and not one to suffer fools, she is wonderfully entertaining.

Not surprisingly, I did pass on making the Corned Tongue and the Headcheese. But I did quickly notice Diana’s recipe for Sauteed Spinach. Try as I may, I can never get mine right. Her recipe worked perfectly. I did adlib at the very end and garnished with a handful of chopped almonds. Shhhh, please don’t tell Diana!

Finally, onto the Blue Zones — The Blue Zone Kitchen: 100 Recipes to Live to 100 by Dan Buettner. This cookbook is divided into the five identified ‘Blue Zones’ offering recipes and other healthy living tips from each area. The first recipe that I tried (One Pot Lasagna) was from Loma Linda, California. Loma Linda contains a large concentration of Seventh-day Adventists (who predominantly follow a diet of grains, fruits, nuts and vegetables prepared as simply and naturally as possible). In fact, the diet that Seventh-day Adventists have long advocated is quite similar to the current dietary guidelines recommended by the American Cancer Society. The One Pot Lasagna was filled with brown lentils, veggies and whole-grain noodles. It also contained a 1/2 cup of red wine which surprised me (but I definitely included it). The final results were a very flavourful soup that predominantly used ingredients that I already had on hand. Win-win!

Sticking with my soup theme, I also tried the Minestrone with Fennel and Wild Garlic from the Sardinia section. This dish was loaded with legumes and fresh vegetables. It was especially comforting on a cold autumn evening.

I then went onto Thrive (also by Dan Buettner). The focus here was on how a community could be shaped to increase the overall contentment of its residents. The cynic in me constantly struggled with how you can accurately measure happiness…especially of an entire community, city or island. Still, this was quite a thought-provoking read that offered good insights into increasing joy on the individual level. Nothing on this list was too surprising, but the reminders were useful.

Because I felt I got what I needed from the above Blue Zones books, I did a rapid read of Buettner’s The Blue Zones of Happiness. (Seriously, didn’t I just discuss that book?) Of particular note in this edition is the Blue Zones Happiness Test, which gives the reader overall scores for Pleasure, Purpose and Pride. My results surprised me. You can take a similar test here.

Wrapping up this longer than planned post, I also read Moon Madness, and my classics book club finished Villette. You can catch my reviews here:

Villette, Charlotte Brontë
Moon Madness: Dr, Louise All, 60 Years of Healing in Africa, Alan Twigg
National Geographic Blue Zones (Single Edition Magazine), National Geographic Society
Thrive: Finding Happiness the Blue Zones Way, Dan Buettner
Nothing Fancy: Recipes and Recollections of Soul Satisfying Food, Diana Kennedy
Island Eats: Signature Chef’s Recipes from Vancouver Island and the Salish Sea, Dawn Postnikoff, J. Sasvari
The Blue Zones Kitchen: 100 Recipes to Live to 100, Dan Buettner
The Blue Zones of Happiness, Dan Buettner
What’s been on your bookshelf recently?

What others have been reading:
Sue (cohost)
Jo (cohost)
Debbie (cohost)
Jennifer
Carol
Natalie
Joanne
Thistles & Kiwis
Lydia
Julie
The Widow Badass

87 thoughts on “What’s On Your Bookshelf: The Blue Zone & Cookbook Edition”

    1. I’m glad that I whetted your appetite for reading more about The Blue Zones. I think that you will find some of this research to be very interesting (I did)!
      I’ve tried unsuccessfully to follow your blog but it keeps kicking me out. (I promise to behave while reading.) I just tried again and think that I was successful this time. Fingers crossed!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Wow what a power packed post Donna! I know you’ve talked of Blue Zones before, so this helped me make a bit more sense of it all. What a wonderful collection of books to all arrive at once, how could you not see that happening!!! I laugh when you mention your bakery in Ladysmith as we have a very small town on the way to Wagga Wagga called Ladysmith, but it unfortunately doesn’t have a bakery! Thanks for going down all the rabbit holes for me.

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    1. Hi, Debbie – Our library is certainly unpredictable as to when books will arrive – especially since the pandemic. It’s usually feast or famine — no matter how hard I try to balance my requests.
      It’s so cool that you also have a small town near you called Ladysmith. They should open a sister-bakery there. It could be a HUGE hit!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Jill – Thanks so much for stopping by and for your positive comment! I agree that the Blue Zones are fascinating. Sadly, many of them are now starting to erode with modernization undoing some of the previous healthy lifestyles. Then and now the Blue Zones offer great lessons to all of us.

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  2. I didn’t realize these places were called “Blue Zones” but I love the term and have added it to my internal dictionary! I’m off to do the true happiness test – I’d better pass with flying colours or I’ll be seriously questioning the science behind it all! 🤣

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    1. Hi, Leanne – Thanks so much for dropping by. I predict that you will receive top marks on the Blue Zones’ Happiness Test. That assessment does give a general rating in three categories. I would be very interested in hearing if your categories were even, or if one or two scored higher than the other. I was delighted with my Happiness Score…until I read the line about needing to improve in the ‘pleasure’ category. It gave me good food for thought!

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  3. Wow, you put my book reading to shame! I’m going to have to take a drive up the freeway to Loma Linda one of these days to see what makes it so Blue. And, I agree with Diana about chocolate chips in oatmeal cookies – that’s just wrong on so many levels. This is the second time I’ve read that canola oil was a no-no. Why? I usually use olive oil, but not always. Now, I need to take the Happiness Test… I’ll let you know how I do.

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    1. Hi, Janis – I always love your comments. They are more like our discussions together — which I dearly miss.
      My understanding is that Loma Linda was included as a Blue Zone because of its high concentration of Seventh-day Adventists who tend to live much longer than average due to their healthy diet and family-oriented lifestyle (amongst other things).
      My understanding about canola oil is that it is a highly processed food. Most canola is chemically extracted using hexane. Heat is often applied which can affect the stability of the oil’s molecules, turn it rancid, destroy the omega-3s in it, and can then create trans fats. None of that sounds too good to me.
      Let’s chat together soon!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow! That was a pretty deep dive into the Blue Zones, and I am glad you took us along! I totally get why no headcheese (disgusting stuff – I used to have to slice it up for customers when I worked in my dad’s store) and am now anxiously awaiting your homemade cinnamon buns following Old Town Bakery’s recipe!

    Deb

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    1. Yay, about those Cinnamon Buns. They may be a pipe dream for me to make. Jo (And Anyways) recently made them and said that although they turned out pillowy soft and yummy, they were also quite technical and a bit of a “faff” (or some Australian term like that) to make. If Master Baker Jo found them to be technical, there is likely little hope for me. But…I’d be happy to treat you to one on our next outing to Ladysmith! How’s that for a deal?!

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      1. I’m not surprised. If those buns were easy, everyone would make them. I will definitely take you up on that deal though.

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  5. I can totally vouch for the cinnamon rolls. A bit of a faff to make to be sure, but total decadence. Diana Kennedy sounds worth reading for the read (I’m passing on the tongue and headcheese too…) and you’ve got me looking for references to Blue Zones. I’m this far from jumping dow the rabbit hole.

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    1. Hi, Jo – You’d definitely enjoy Diana Kennedy’s book for the read. There may even be several recipes that you’d like to try (since I know you find recipe photos optional — unlike me, who deems them essential). 😀 I highly recommend some of the Blue Zones materials. The National Geographic Mag gives an awesome overview. There are also several articles regarding Blue Zones free online. Caution – don’t jump down the rabbit hole! Reading four full Blue Zones books back to back was a bit obsessive (even for me) and a tad redundant!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi Donna what an informative post. I’ve known about Blue Zones but I’m so pleased you went down your rabbit hole to discover the Blue Zone Cookbooks. I will definitely be trying some of the recipes. The One Pot Lasagne, the Minestrone with Wild Fennel and Garlic and of course the Gnocchi with Roasted Squash and Beets. All of these recipes sound delicious. My Dad used to eat tongue – I’ll just leave you with that thought…..

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    1. Thank you for this kind comment, Sue. I think that you and Mike would enjoy several of the Blue Zone recipes, especially the ones from Sardinia.
      Funny girl leaving me with that thought about your Dad eating tongue. I can’t even wrap my mind around eating that. Yuk!! 😀

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    1. Hi, Jennifer – Thank you so much for joining in. I have added your link to the main body of this post. Where the River Bends looks like a great book. I just watched the book trailer. I would definitely LOVE to have a seat and the Barnes’ table!

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    1. Hi, Frank – Great to hear from you. I thought that you hadn’t resumed posting yet. I just checked and saw a whole pile of your posts that I have missed. Funny, WordPress tells me that I am subscribed by email to your blog, but I haven’t received any notices recently. I will unsubscribe and subscribe again. Hopefully, that will work. See you there!
      Oh yes, and back to your comment. I 100% agree that healthy eating no longer needs to mean boring eating. This morning, I was working on my What’s On Your Plate post. I had a whole ‘sea of pink’ going on in the kitchen—all healthy, but also quite fun—and pretty too. Stay tuned for that!

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      1. Hi again, Frank – Thank you also for your concern. The recent storm disaster in BC has been horrific. Our one son is still stranded in the Okanagan as all BC roads and highways from there to Vancouver have been closed for the past six days. Our other son on the Island had his fully finished basement completely flooded out. All carpets, furniture, electronics, etc. etc. destroyed. And this is just minor damage compared to what so many others, especially our farmers and those in towns like Hope and Merrit have gone through. Truly devastating.

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      2. Yep … I started back sometime in late October – but less often. The WP gnomes have a way of working against our intent, so who knows what those sneaky characters are up to. You didn’t mention anything about the flood waters, so I will think that is a good thing. Looking forward to your plate – OH … and the season is here – time to try my cranberry-sausage spaghetti. 🙂

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      3. Thanks, Frank – I have unsubscribed and rescribed to your blog — so hopefully that’s the ticket. The floods have been truly devastating. Our home was not touched and we were not traveling at the time, but two of our sons were affected. Extremely difficult times for so many with some of our major highways still firmly closed with no upcoming opening in sight.
        Funny you mention the Cranberry-Sausage Spaghetti. I was just thinking about that recipe the other day. I am not much of a meat eater but it does sound very Christmassy so I plan to make it for one of our sons this holiday season. I’ll let you know how it goes.

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    1. Hi, Natalie – Thank you for joining in. I have added your link to the main body of this post and am off to check out your post now. Thank you also for your kind wishes. Richard, myself and our family are fine, but the recent BC storm disaster has been a nightmare. See my comment to Frank for more details.

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  7. I haven’t been into cookbooks lately. I often get them for gifts at the holidays so maybe in January I’ll be there again. If nothing else a cookbook collection looks lovely on a shelf or kitchen counter. Yes, I’m advocating decorating with books!

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    1. Hi, Ally – Decorating with books sounds good to me. Ironically, I have never been much of a cookbook buyer either (but I love special ones that I received as gifts). Now, when a cookbook strikes my eye, I usually try to get it from our local library first. Then if it is something that I will definitely use more than once or twice (or has multiple purposes like Island Eats), I request it from Santa. Hopefully, Santa is listening!

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  8. Two books on the go right now, neither of which are cookbooks – 12 Rules For Life: An Antidote To Chaos by Jordan B Peterson and The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson. I’ve stopped buying cookbooks and downsized the collection a few years ago. I get new recipes on line or from magazines. I feel like the ingredients are just put in different combination and with a few different spices and like fashion, keep reappearing. Love eating out of the garden and what can be foraged (berries). We used to make “headcheese” using pork hocks which may be more palatable to some. I grew up in an area with settlers who knew all about the head to tail movement before it was one. I’ve also said that we were the original organic farmers – if we didn’t grow it, pick it or kill it, we wouldn’t have eaten!

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    1. Hi, Mona – I love that you and your family were original organic farmers. So many of us have grown up relying on store-bought convenience foods and are now trying to find our way back to healthier eating. Both of your current reads sound great. An Anecdote to Chaos sounds especially interesting — I will look it up. Thanks so much for dropping by. I greatly appreciate it.

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    1. Thanks so much for stoping by and contributing. I’m glad that it is not just me who often receives a pile of library books all at once — even when I try to spread out my requests. I’m off to check out your October reads now. See you there!

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  9. I have an old version of the Blue Zones cookbook. My faves are the Ikarian Stew, the Melis Family Minestrone and the Lentil Soup (I always use French green lentils).

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    1. Hi, Donna – Looks like we have similar tastes! The recipes that you mentioned stood out to me as well. I made one of the minestrones, but not the Melis family one. All three of those recipes are on my list to try. Thank you for the endorsement. I hope all has gone well with your renovations.

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    1. Hi, Lydia – Thanks so much for dropping by. My understanding is that the Blue Zones diets are not strictly low cholesterol, but I agree that most of them have much in common with low-cholesterol meal plans (e.g. avoiding fried and processed foods, limiting red meats as well as baked goods and sweets). I usually eat this way myself but don’t usually find it boring. I do completely agree about no corned tongue. That just doesn’t sound good to me! 😀

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    1. Hi, Kate – There are lots of good takeaways from the Blue Zone materials. Sadly, many of the Blue Zones are eroding as modernatization and convenience eating + convenience lifestyles take over. This is another reminder that not all things modern equal progress. 😀

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  10. I had heard of those places where the longest-lived people in the world lived, Donna, but had not heard of them referred to as Blue Zones. This was a very enlightening post and boy, you can read!! And getting the books all at once? Well, that has happened to me, too. That one-pot lasagna sounds delicious! Bon appetite!

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    1. Hi, Terri – Blue Zones were named as the original researchers who discovered them (Pes and Poulain) drew blue circles around these area on their map. I love learning cool trivia like this.
      The one-pot lasagna was delicious. I highly recommend it (especially with red wine)!

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  11. Donna,
    Count me among those who haven’t heard of Blue Zones, but I remember reading once about a large community of centenarians in Russia. Their daily diet contained a substantial quantity of Yogurt–probably had lentils in it. I just completed a Nutrisystem program and lost 20 lbs in time for the holidays. I should read some of the books on your shelf to avoid a relapse. Very informative! Thanks, and enjoy! Joe

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    1. Hi, Joe – Congratulations on your success with Nutrisystem. That is awesome willpower. Like many, I am usually aware of what foods are healthiest for me — but knowing and doing are two different things. I hadn’t heard about Russia’s version of a Blue Zone. I love lentils and like yogurt….but having them both combined may not be my thing. I’m off to read your post now.

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  12. Hi Donna – thanks so much for the link … I’ve been busy with local things – hence the slow to be here. Diana Kennedy’s book was, as you’ve correctly described, as ‘Recollections’ – and took me back over the nearly 100 years of her life – essentially my mother’s and my own time frame – not a history, but with so many backstories I could relate to. It has Cornish cream teas?!

    The Blue Zone books look to be really interesting … and I love learning more about foods that are good for us. My parents grew most of our food after the War … now I buy as sensibly as I can and will always eat a balanced diet. I always love the sound of your and your blogging foodie buddies’ dishes they create …

    Island Eats – about food and recipes from Vancouver Island – I used to love the books and magazines I saw on VI deliciousness … I’m sure Santa will deliver! Cheers – Hilary

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    1. Hi, Hilary – Thank you again for the recommendation on Diana Kennedy’s book. Nothing Fancy was an engrossing read. It made me feel like I was sitting with Diana and having tea together (as she pontificated on all that was wrong with my kitchen) 😀
      Buying sensibly and balancing our diets is definitely the way to go. But as I just mentioned to Joe, that is often easier said than done.
      I hope your busyness settles down for you — unless it is all enjoyable busyness that is!

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  13. Donna, like many others, I haven’t heard of the Blue Zones. However, our former neighbors, both retired Adventist doctors in their early 80s live the blue lifestyle and went to Loma Linda University, the Adventist college in Loma Linda. They are vegan. I admire their lifestyle, but can’t bring myself to copy it. Nonetheless, the Adventists are very long-lived because of their food choices and choices not to smoke or drink. One doctor I know was close to 80, I think and still working. I’ve lost touch, but I would expect him to still be alive.

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    1. Hi, Marsha – Thank you so much for dropping by. The good news about the Blue Zones is that although they each have core principles in common, their lifestyles and diets are also quite distinct from each other. This is an excellent reminder that what works best for one person or community may not work best for another. I believe that living a healthy lifestyle is about finding what works best for our bodies and minds – and then living with balance and moderation. At least that is my interpretation!

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      1. That sounds good to me. I had never heard of this before. I think I lived in the orange zone in California. Many of the women on our 1/2 mile rural street got cancer during the time we lived there including me. I talked to a young woman yesterday from PA, and she said many of their classmates in high school had already passed away because of the Three Mile Island Explosion in March of 1979. She is 41. Location is a big part of the blue zone, I’m sure. I haven’t read the book, though. Great recommendation, Donna.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Hi, Marsha – I’m so sorry to hear about you living in the ‘orange zone’, and about your friend from PA. You are right, location is a big factor in the Blue Zones — healthy environment enhances healthy lives. I greatly appreciate you adding this feedback (the comment section is always my favourite parts of blog posts). 😀

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  14. Wow, you have been busy reading and cooking, Donna! Your first recipes sounded mind-watering, until you reached Diana’s book, haha. As I mentioned before, I’m curious about the blue zones experiences as well. But, like you mention, probably not too many revelations to be had. You (and I) know how to live a fulfilling life. 🙂

    As far as my reading goes, I’m still on my sad average of one book every two months. Sigh. I will do better in 2022! Going to take that test now.

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      1. I wish I read two books per month, Donna. But it’s the other way around – one book every two months. I plan on changing that average next year. 🙂

        I found some of the questions interesting… not really indicators that would define happiness in my opinion. But they must be beneficial to longevity! The main thing was that some of the questions are inapplicable to my lifestyle. For example doing volunteer work on a regular basis or calling good friends on the phone. I was surprised about the sexual relations question.

        But, you are right, I had a very high score, despite answering some questions in a more negative way. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oops – that I was a typo. I meant to say “one book every two months.” There were years on end that I seldom read for pleasure. With busy lifestyles somethings gotta give.
        Thank you for your prompt feedback on the Blue Zones test. Funny about the sexual relations questions – I don’t even remember them. I may have taken a slightly different test! 😀

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    1. Hi, Barb – I thought that you were on a blogging break?! I do greatly appreciate you dropping by. I had heard about the Blue Zones before, but this time did a much deeper dive. I also like learning about how we can increase our overall health and wellbeing. Even when it is information that I already know — I usually find the reminders to be very useful.

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      1. Hi Donna, I am technically on a break, but working my way back. Almost finished with NaNoWriMo and now Thanksgiving is over. I also like learning about nutrition and how to improve my health. And yes, the reminders are useful!

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  15. WOW! That is a booklist! I’m going to try out this BlueZone (something I had heard of before) It’s time to stick my neck out and try new things. Thanks for the post.

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  16. Ha! I got an A+ on the happiness quiz! It surprised me, because I thought I would lose points for living where I live. But I honestly do think I will live longer in the tight-knit community here, pollution and traffic notwithstanding, than I would have back when we were isolated in the middle of the woods in Michigan.

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    1. Hi, Bethany – Congratulations on your A+. That is very consistent with the positive attitude that I see on your blog. I also had a good score on this happiness test but was told that I should increase my ‘pleasure.’ Sounds like a fun project to work on! Thank you so much for dropping by.

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  17. Donna, thank you for this excellent introduction to Blue Zones and some of the books about them! I’ve never heard of the term and now look forward to learning even more – having been to Greece several times I’m not surprised it’s on the list! Great detailed analysis of the books. I finished Ruth Hogan’s latest book last night ‘Madame Burova’ (author of the wonderful ‘The Keeper of Lost Things’). A really good read but not as great as her superlative first novel. Hope you’re having a good start to the week!

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  18. Hi, Annika – Thanks so much for stopping by. I haven’t yet hear of ‘Madame Burova’ but I have read excellent reviews on ‘The Keeper of Lost Things.’ Thank you for recommending these books to us. I am also on the look out for great reads!

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  19. Hi Donna,
    Reading this and talking to Deb inspired me. I would love to do an interview with the four of you in my blog, Always Write. As you may know, I have done a random series since last June. Here is the link so you can get an idea of the interviews I’ve done over the last year and a half. https://alwayswrite.blog/challenge-interview-series/ I’ll send you an email with the questions, and you gals can chat and see what you think and get back to me. 🙂

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  20. Hi Donna

    Well I am wayyy behind in reading and responding to all my favorite blogs but was starting with yours and posted a lovely response, which then promptly vanished into cyber land. Sigh. Ok, so here goes again…

    I thoroughly enjoyed this post because the topic of aging and longevity and how it is impacted by what we put into our bodies and how we live our lives, is of great interest to me. I loved the start, with you falling DEEP into the rabbit hole, haha… And brought back memories of how I used to go to the library (pre google days) when I wanted or needed to delve into a topic and return home with piles of books to get the information, so I do get that. And yes, when it rains it pours.

    Am with you totally on the plant based. I eat meat rarely and fish if its very fresh but I prefer not to cook meat or fish at home and our fridge and pantry when we have one, is therefore all plant based. Looks like you made some really good dishes, I hope you post more of your dishes on your instagram so we can see what else you are trying out. Yum.

    Being here in Sicily we are probably eating a diet pretty close to the blue zone one and of course Sardinia is not that far off. Not sure we need the quantities of pasta that we are eating but we are balancing it out with fresh fish and fruits and veggies as always.

    Great post.
    Peta

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    1. Hi, Peta and Ben – Thank you for reading and commenting. I have been following your adventures (both on your blog and on your videos) and greatly appreciate the time and effort that you put into making us all feel that we are right there beside you. Your photography is absolutely stunning!
      I also seldom eat meat at home. A plant-based diet, with small amounts of meat or fish when out, works well for me. It’s also what I find my body (or is that my mind?!) craving more and more.
      BTW – It now feels like having a famous Hollywood couple or influencer commenting on my blog! 😀 I look forward to continuing to follow your adventures.

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  21. I am from Los Angeles and I recalled learning about Loma Linda and the residents’ longer life expectancy. It was quite interesting; there’s a higher concentration of Seventh Day Adventists and their lifestyle has led to healthier outcomes due to less meat consumption and no smoking and alcohol.

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