The People's Perspective on Medicine

Show 1117: What Can Chinese Centenarians Teach You About Long Life?

We often associate aging with chronic illnesses. In this broadcast for April 14, 2018, learn how centenarians in a remote Chinese village stay healthy. Will you adopt their life lessons?
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What Can Chinese Centenarians Teach You About Long Life?

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More Americans are living to old ages, but frequently their later years are plagued with chronic diseases. Is there a way to stay healthy into the ninth and tenth decade of life? To find out, we take a virtual trip to visit centenarians in a remote village in southern China.

Visit to Longevity Village:

Dr. John Day, an interventional cardiologist fluent in Mandarin, became concerned about his own health prospects in his mid-40s. At the same time, he began learning about a village in rural China where centenarians were unusually common and exceptionally healthy. What was going on there to explain this? He and his wife Jane set out with their family to find out.

Lessons of Longevity:

Once the Day family got to Bapan (no mean feat), they were amazed by the vitality of the elders there. These centenarians were happy to teach them their secrets of a long healthy life: good food, a positive mind-set, staying in motion, connecting with community, following your own rhythm and living with purpose. How can Americans incorporate this wisdom into their own lives? The Days tell us how we can benefit from what they have learned.

This Week’s Guests:

John Day, MD, is a cardiologist and medical director of Heart Rhythm Services at Intermountain Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. He earned his medical degree at Johns Hopkins University and completed his cardiology training at Stanford University. Dr. Day is a former president of the Heart Rhythm Society and is currently president of the Utah Chapter of the American College of Cardiology. His website is He and his wife Jane are co-authors, with Matthew LaPlante, of The Longevity Plan: Seven Life-Transforming Lessons from Ancient China.

Jane Day has master’s degrees from the Georgetown School of Foreign Service and from the University of California at Santa Cruz. She has a passion for international living and business strategy. Ms. Day is also enthusiastic about healthy comfort foods and hiking in the mountains with her family and dog.

Listen to the Podcast:

The podcast of this program will be available the Monday after the broadcast date. The show can be streamed online from this site and podcasts can be downloaded for free. CDs may be purchased at any time after broadcast for $9.99.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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This program with Dr. Day was very interesting and instructive. I have no doubt that the life style and circumstances of the centenarians in a remote village in southern China are healthy and much better than the way in which Dr. Day was living prior to his first trip to China. But has it been confirmed that these active, elderly people in China are actually centenarians? I recall that a number of year ago a more rigorous follow up to a study of healthy “centenarians” showed few if any of those claiming to be 100 or more years old actually were.

How do you download the podcast for free? Don’t see a way to do it. I want #1117.

You have a lot of great shows but this is one of the best. My wife and I have implemented a similar life style about five years ago as described by your guest, and we are experiencing similar results. This stuff actually works and has significantly improved our outlook on health & aging.

I will be 81, this coming May and I was diagnosed with A-Fib in 2008. Dr. Day performed a catheter ablation in August of 2017 and I have had only one episode of A-fib since. I am now medication free. In the past I have suffered terrible side affects from all blood thinners. Dr. Day is a doctor that does not insist that I take blood thinners and ignore the terrible side affects. I highly recommend his book: The Longevity Plan

Thank you – I couldn’t find the free podcast – but I did find the book at my Library!

Wow what a nice interview. The only question I thought of you didn’t ask was about how much those villagers in China ate at different times per day. I often tell people who skip breakfast that they are on a “Sumo wrestler diet” but I’d like to hear other opinions on that.

I love that you asked about the mind factor – how much attitude or stressful thoughts plays a role. Even before you asked they mentioned it first on their list of things that matter. Thanks for offering these interviews free for a while so frugal people like me can learn from them. (I was going to call myself a cheapskate, but frugal is a more positive attitude)

Dr. John Day did not tell us what he learned about longevity other than soup made out of hemp seeds. What else did he learn? What exactly has he been eating to bring down his HBP and other ailments. Very boring broadcast. We all know about exercise. Thank you for all you do.

I am 88 and have a great desire for their message, but I can’t hear well enough to know what people are saying on your show, nor can I from a CD. I am willing to pay well for the info being in a guide or some way I could read it. Please don’t tempt us then leave us hanging.

Julie, you might be interested in their book, The Longevity Plan. If you don’t want to buy it, ask to check it out from your local public library.

I took care of both of my mother in law and mother at the same time in their homes. Their secret they never went to the doctors both died at 94. My brother talked my mom into a flu shot , she landed in the hospital next day dying, doc told us that the flu shot was gereatic (sp)genocide and it gave mom congestive heart failure but mag. chloride saved her life 4 times.

Last September I took the antibiotic Cipro for a UTI .
The third day my left foot at the ankle started to hurt but I completed the 5 day dose.
As of today April 2018 it continues to hurt when I walk. I read that a side effect is the breakdown of the ankle tendon. What can I do to help this problem?

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