The Hunza is a mountainous valley in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan. The Hunza is situated in the extreme northern part of Pakistan. It is believed that among the residents of Hunza people, centenarians are a common occurrence, and that it is not unusual for elderly persons to reach the venerable age of 130. It has even been reported that a significant number have survived to the incredible age of 145!
These Hunza people are not the product of legend, nor is the country they inhabit a mythical utopia. They call themselves the Hunzas (pronounced Hoonzas) and live in what has come to be known as the roof of the world – the mountain peaks of the Himalayas. To be more precise, the Hunza country, with a population of only 30,000, is situated at the extreme northern point of India, where the borders of Kashmir, China, India and Afghanistan converge.
The life expectancy of an average human nowadays is about 70 years. The life expectancy of the average Hunza people falls onto a different scale altogether – these people reach both physical and intellectual maturity at the venerable age of one hundred! This fact emphasizes the relative nature of what we refer to as normal.
They also force us to ask the following question: is there some secret technique that allows these Hunza people to live so long, and stay so healthy? The answer is yes – the Hunzas do know something we don’t. But there isn’t just one secret, there are many.
The first, and certainly the most important of these secrets concerns nutrition. Interestingly enough, the Hunza people’s approach resembles that outlined by Hippocrates, father of modern medicine, who lived over 2000 years ago in ancient Greece. The basic precept of their common notion of what constitutes a proper diet is simple: the food you eat is your best medicine.
Let’s take a moment to summarize the basic principles and ingredients of the Hunza people’s diet which, is no doubt, one of the main reasons for their exceptional longevity.
RULE NO.1: FRUGALITY
Try to fashion your diet according to Hunza standards: In fact, an excellent way to regenerate your organism and give your digestive system a rest is to fast, or drink only juice, for one day a week. Every spring the Hunzas fast for a number of days.
RULE NO. 2: MAKE FRESH FRUITS AND VEGETABLES A MAJOR PART OF YOUR DIET
Eat most of your vegetables raw, or very lightly steamed. Cut down on your intake of meat, and try preparing your own chapatti bread.
RULE NO. 3: Fasting for one day a week
and maintaining a frugal diet based on Hunza principles for the rest of the week, will be certain to prolong your life and keep you healthy. In fact, you will probably feel completely rejuvenated, both physically and mentally.
RULE NO. 4:
DAILY PHYSICAL EXERCISE
Another great Hunza health secret concerns the considerable amount of time each day devoted to physical exercise. Most exercise is done outdoors in order to take advantage of the pure mountain air, which in itself has a beneficial effect on health.
The Hunzas, in turn are a living example and irrefutable proof that it is possible to add years to your life right now, with a little bit of care and willpower.
Let’s come together and embrace the ‘extraordinary life of Hunzas!