Madonie: elixir of long life
The population of the Madonie mountains manages to maintain a traditional lifestyle, characterised by intense physical activity - even for those aged 80 or more.
One of the reasons to visit the Madonie is the mystery of the elixir of long life. In this small patch of land in the province of Palermo, there is a significantly higher percentage of centenarians compared to the rest of Italy – almost double of the nationwiThe population of the Madonie mountains manages to maintain a traditional lifestyle, characterised by intense physical activity – even for those aged 80 or more.de figure at 4.7 every 10 thousand inhabitants. A place where – because of some lucky genetic and environmental alignment – people tend to live longer thanks to a healthy diet and daily habits. The population of the Madonie mountains manages to maintain a traditional lifestyle, characterised by intense physical activity (even for those aged 80 or more,) a reduced level of stress, an all-out support of the family and the community for the elderly, and most of all the consumption of traditional foods of the Mediterranean diet, where locally-grown fruit and vegetables are preferred to red meat, eggs, and dairy products. The secret of a long life lies also in genetic features forged throughout the centuries.
Among all these reasons, the enchanted places and the unspoiled nature of the Madonie Regional Natural Park deserve a special mention, as they allowed the Madonie villages to qualify as the sixth Blue Zone of the planet (a region of the world where people live much longer than average). The other Blue Zones include the island of Okinawa in Japan, Loma Linda in California, Nicoya in Costa Rica, Icaria in Greece and Nuoro in Sardinia. The high concentration of longevity in this area of Sicily is certified by the Department of Biopathology and Medical Biotechnology (DiBiMed) of the University of Palermo in collaboration with Michel Poulain, an acclaimed demographer specialising in longevity studies.