Ikaria is the name of a Greek island located in the Aegean Sea. This island is approximately ten miles southwest of Samos, the populace is known as Icarians, or Ikarian Greeks. Ethnically speaking, they are Greek with Pelasgian and Carian ancestry. The people of this small island are best known for their life longevity (although statistics are difficult to compile as birth certificates are not the norm).
The data we do have indicates that the people of Ikaria are reaching the age of 90 almost three times as often as Americans. Ikarian men are also four times as likely to reach 90 years old than their American counterparts. Both sexes have been recorded to live at least eight to ten years longer than most Americans.
What is it about the Ikarian lifestyle that has allowed the people to live for so much longer? The first thing to look at is their clean, simple lifestyle.
For example, the Ikarian diet consists of a very low intake of saturated fats from meats and oils. This results in an extremely low risk of heart disease. Their produce is grown without pesticides, their meat without hormones, and processed foods are nearly non-existent.
FUN FACT: On a clear day, you can see notorious party island Mykonos from the shores of Ikaria
Unprocessed (‘raw’) foods appear in nature with the positive enzymes needed for digestion. They also consume a lot of unheated olive oil, which has been proven to reduce bad cholesterol. Everyone on the island drinks goat’s milk, which is very easy on the digestive system (especially in the elderly) and contains serotonin-boosting tryptophan.