There is so much confusion these days about what is healthy and what isn’t. The end result is people eating whatever they desire which is usually the cause of their ill health.

“All carbohydrates are not created equal.”

You have heard this a thousand times. Yet, people avoid carbohydrates like the plague and prefer to focus on a high fat and high protein diet.


I’ve just completed reading ‘Dan Buettner’s book, “The Blue Zones” where he investigated populations where the centenarians are highest in number, as compared to the rest of the world.  These centenarians are people that are at least a 100 years old and disease free.

The Blue Zones are:
Okinawa, Japan
Sardinia, an Italian Island
Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula
Greek Island of Ikaria
Sardinia, an Italian Island

I am sure that there are other areas in the world that qualify as ‘Blue Zones’ but the five zones mentioned above are areas that have records which are accurate and valid.
The common thread in all these areas was that these people consumed high amounts of legumes: beans, peas and lentils.  Legumes are predominantly carbohydrates, high in fibre and have a good amount of protein.
They should be the first foods that are recommended to decrease blood pressure, fight cancer and reduce weight.
There are several studies that show how the ‘resistant starch’ in these legumes fight cancer. Also, the protein in these foods are plant based so it will not grow cancer in any way.

Yet, somehow, they’re lumped in with processed carbohydrates like bread and cereal that increase disease risk among other illnesses.

Some people only consume legumes in their processed form, baked beans, which does not have the same benefits as cooking the beans from scratch. This refined form of beans also causes indigestion and high amounts of gas due to the processing that it underwent.

Traditions, culture and eating habits usually stick for generations within a population group if they have been proven to be useful.  Other lifestyle habits that don’t have the same positive effects usually fall by the wayside.
So the next time you read about the latest diet fad that is trending, think about and remember the population studies as found in these ‘Blue Zones.’
Living happily at 100 years or more of age without any chronic illness is an incredible, outstanding achievement and legumes are a BIG part of it.
Perhaps we should invest our time wisely and see where we’re focusing our efforts. Reading and learning from the “Blue Zones’ would be a good starting point in our creating our longevity.
“Hara Hachi Bu”  :  Eat until you are 80% full
(Ancient Japanese Saying)