Cultivate social connections and support

The past few weeks I have been blogging about The Okinawa Program and the amazing health and longevity of this remarkable society.  To live the “Okinawa Way” strive to:

  • get lifelong regular physical activity
  • eat a mostly plant-based diet that includes fish and soy foods with a great variety of vegetables and moderate amounts of the right kind of fat
  • cultivate strong social and community support-Develop social connections with friends and family.
  • develop a sense of independence and self-responsibility for health

Take the social support checklist. Check off the statements that apply to you:

  1. ___If I wanted to go on a day trip to the country or the mountains I could easily find someone to go with me.
  2. ___There is someone with whom I can share my most private worries and fears.
  3. ___If I were sick, I could easily find someone to help me with my daily chores.
  4. ___There is someone I can turn to for advice about handling family problems.
  5. ___If I decide one afternoon that I would like to go to a movie that evening, I could easily find someone to go with me.
  6. ___When I need suggestions on how to deal with a personal problem, I know someone I can turn to.
  7. ___I often get invited to do things with others.
  8. ___If I had to go out-of-town for  a few weeks, it would not be difficult to find someone to look after my house or apartment.
  9. ___If I wanted to have lunch with someone, I could easily find someone to join me.
  10. ___If I were stranded ten miles from home, there is someone who would come and get me.
  11. ___If a family crisis arose, it would be easy for me to find someone who could give me good advice on how to handle it.
  12. ___If I needed some help moving to a new location, it would be easy to find someone to help me.

Younger Okinawans who have abandoned traditional ways of the Okinawa lifestyle in favor of those  of contemporary Japan and America are beginning to show expected decline in health and incidence of Western disease.

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