China and Japan could have something else to disagree about other the politics — that being who claims the title of the oldest living person on the planet.
Jiroemon Kimura , 115, of Japan just landed the title of the world’s oldest living person according to Guinness World Records, but China says not so fast.
Luo Meizhen, a woman who lives in a village in Guangxi province in Bama County, claims to be 127 years old. Bama County in China is known for the longevity of its residents including many centenarians.
Luo Meizhen claims to have been born in 1885, but the records are a little sketchy according to Yahoo! News because “birth certificates in the region only started to be kept after the 1949 Communist takeover. All she has is a faded copy of her identity card …”
According to London’s Daily Mail, the longevity record may or may not become a bone of contention between the two countries.
“It is unclear how aggressively China intends to pursue the centenarian’s record claim, but it has the potential to become another bone of contention between the country and its rival power.
“Even if Ms. Luo does not manage to wrest the title from Mr. Kimura, interest in her home county will doubtless continue as it draws thousands of visitors seeking to discover the secret behind the long lives of its 74 residents aged more than 100.”
The ChinAfrica website offers this explanation of why Bama county residents seem to live so long:
“Researchers say the longevity of people in Bama is a result of their healthy lifestyle. For thousands of years, Bama people have worked from sunrise to sunset. They have adequate sleep at night and physical exercise during working hours. Every day, they go up and down the mountains doing farm work, and children tramp over mountains to school. Such high-intensity physical exercise helps build robust constitutions and strong hearts. Besides, many also have the habit of soaking their feet in hot water every night, which is thought by the Chinese to be a simple but effective way to maintain health.”
Watch a video about Luo Meizhen, purported to be the world’s oldest living person, and other long-lived Bama county residents: