Blue Zones Discovery


The Blue Zones Discovery may not be what people are being led to believe. This study was originally one of observation not one of cause and effect. Therefore it has caused some confusion.

Communities of people who compose Blue Zones did not set out to exceed average lifespans. Instead, the study showed that Blue Zones of people lives coincidently exceeded the average not always healthy lifespan. Let me continue to clarify this situation.

The Blue Zones Solution, Living and Eating Like the World’s Healthiest . . . .
The Study
A group of three men, primarily Dan Buettner conducted a study on the lifespans of people throughout the world. Where ever there were clusters of people who exceeded the average lifespan, especially centenarians, were circled in blue marker. For lack of a more original name, the name ‘Blue Zones’ was adopted. Therefore the discovery of blue zones was an exercise in observation. In conclusion, their existence became the foundation of the Blue Zones Discovery study.

1. Greece
Blue Zone, Ikaria, Greece from
What are ‘Blue Zones,’ and do they really hold the secrets to …
“For more than a decade, author Dan Buettner has been working to identify hot spots of longevity around the world. With the help of the National Geographic Society, Buettner set out to locate places that not only had high concentrations of individuals over 100 years old, but also clusters of people who had grown old without health problems like heart disease, obesity, cancer, or diabetes. His findings—along with easy steps you can take to live more like these cultures—can be found in his book, The Blue Zones Solution.”
blue-zone discovery
Blue Zone, Okinawa, Japan from

Location of world Blue Zones

Icaria: A small Greek island in the Aegean sea
Ogliastra, Sardinia: A region of an Italian island in the Mediterranean
Okinawa: An island off the coast of Japan
Nicoya Peninsula: A peninsula in eastern Costa Rica
The Seventh-day Adventists in Loma Linda: A community in the hilly valleys of California
3. Sardinia
Blue Zone, Sardinia from
The Blue Zones: The World’s Healthiest Populations from

Natural movement. Individuals living in Blue Zone regions engage in everyday physical activities, such as gardening, walking, and climbing hills and mountains.
Sense of purpose. One’s purpose in life, referred to as Ikigai in Okinawa and plan de vida in Nicoya (which translates to “why I wake up in the morning”), contributes to human longevity and overall health and well-being.”

4. California
Blue Zone, Loma Linda, California from
Stress management. Although stress is nearly impossible to avoid, chronic (long-term) stress can wreak havoc on the body. When left unaddressed, chronic stress may contribute to inflammation and certain health conditions, such as heart disease and depression.

5. Costa Rica
Blue Zone, Costa Rica from

80% rule. People in the Blue Zones tend to avoid overeating by eating until their stomachs are about 80% full. Many individuals also eat smaller meals throughout the day and abstain from eating late in the evening.”


Although we may be far from having a planet full of blue zones, studying the ones that already exist can be very helpful. Even though we cannot change certain characteristics of people’s lives and environments, there is much that can be done for the future.

Therefore in studying what man in harmony with his nature can create, there is hope that the overall well being of humans on the planet can improve resulting in many more blue zones of healthier, happy people.


What Are the Blue Zones
Blue Zones: Lessons From the World’s Longest Lived
Identification of a geographic area characterized by extreme longevity in the Sardinia island: the AKEA study
The Blue Zones: The World’s Healthiest Populations
“Blue Zones” Where the World’s Healthiest People Live
Blue Zone – Wikipedia
Why People in “Blue Zones” Live Longer Than the Rest of the World
History of Blue Zones – Blue Zones
5 Blue Zones Where People Live the Longest, Healthiest Lives …
6 Secrets to borrow from people who live the …
Dan A. Buettner
The Blue Zones: 9 Lessons for Living Longer From the People Who’ve Lived the Longest by Buettner D. Washington, DC: National Geographic Society; 2008.
The Blue Zones Solution: Eating and Living Like the World’s Healthiest People by Buettner D.. Washington, DC: National Geographic Society; 2015.


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Global Blue Zones



Definition Global Blue zones are regions in the world where people are anticipated to live longer than the average lifespan. In fact, Gianni Pes, Michel Poulain and Dan Buettner did a study that specifically identified five such global zones within the last few decades.

Within the identified areas, there are actually greater than normal numbers of people living healthfully to over 100. Initially each person who qualified became identified by a blue marks on a world map. As a result these accumulated blue marks became solid blue areas. Consequently they were named blue zones.

Locations In other words, the study identified five Global Blue Zones in 2004. They are Okinawa, Japan; Sardinia, Italy; Nicoya, Costa Rica; Icaria, Greece; and Loma Linda, California, United States.

A map of the 5 documented world blue zones published on

Barbagia region of Sardinia – Mountainous highlands of inner Sardinia with the world’s highest concentration of male centenarians.

Ikaria, Greece – Aegean Island with one of the world’s lowest rates of middle age mortality and the lowest rates of dementia.

Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica – World’s lowest rates of middle age mortality, second highest concentration of male centenarians.

Seventh Day Adventists – Highest concentration is around Loma Linda, California. They live 10 years longer than their North American counterparts.

Okinawa, Japan – Females over 70 are the longest-lived population in the world.

Power 9
Power 9® – Reverse Engineering Longevity By Dan Buettner


“We then assembled a team of medical researchers, anthropologists, demographers, and epidemiologists to search for evidence-based common denominators among all places. We found nine.” Power 9 – Blue Zones. They are displayed by the above infographic and the table below.

For clarification, here is a verbal translation of Power 9® – Reverse Engineering Longevity By Dan Buettner.

chart of 4 and 9
Power 9® – Reverse Engineering Longevity By Dan Buettner transformed into a table format by Alison D. Gilbert

Blue zone community certification
Are the number of blue zones increasing? Yes. In fact, these two articles reveal how things are in the works to increase the number of blue zones as well as work towards more blue zones.

First Blue Zones Community Certification in Southeast U.S.—Eight Communities’ Stunning Well-Being Transformations

Beach Cities Rally with Goldie Hawn to Become the First Blue Zones Community

Why Are The Numbers Increasing? Two possibilities factor into the current situation. For example, we are identifying more existing blue zones because we have the criteria. Secondly, we are creating more blue zones because we have the knowledge. As the consciousness continues to increase about what contributes to an area becoming a blue zones, the more the number of zones can increase.

In Conclusion There is no question that we clearly have a long way to go. But at least we are learning what we need to do to improve. Perhaps one day the entire planet will be covered in blue (zones). Wouldn’t that be amazing?!



Blue Zones
First Blue Zones Community Certification in Southeast U.S.—Eight Communities’ Stunning Well-Being Transformations
Lessons from the Blue Zones
The Blue Zones: Lifestyle Habits of the World’s Longest-Living Populations
Blue Zone – Wikipedia

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