The fascination of finding the Fountain of Youth has intrigued many for centuries, yet it has remained elusive for much longer. Still, five women from across the globe may claim to know the secret to life’s longevity, because each has survived over a period of three centuries. Each of the five oldest people in the world have lived since the late 1800s and are still going strong. Even more interesting may be the fact that each is a woman. Gertrude Weaver of Arkansas holds the title for oldest living woman in the United States, but she is only the second oldest in the world.
According to the Huffington Post, the oldest living person in the world is Misao Okawa, a 116-year-old from Osaka, Japan. She was born in 1898 and gained the title of oldest living person when Jiroemon Kimura died in 2013. When asked about her secret to longevity, Misao offered the advice to be sure to eat, drink, sleep, and relax.
“Eat and sleep and you will live a long time. You have to learn to relax.”
Gertrude Weaver, also 116, hails from Arkansas and was born on the 4th of July. Although she does not live independently, she remains fairly active in the care facility that she calls home. In contrast to Misao, Gertrude owes her longevity to her faith in God. Some of the activities that she is known to enjoy are reading the Bible and wheelchair dancing, according to USA Today.
“You have to follow God. Don’t follow anyone else… Be obedient and follow the laws and don’t worry about anything. I’ve followed him for many, many years and I ain’t tired.”
Another woman born in the 1800s lives in Michigan. Jerlean Talley is 115-years-old and prides herself on remaining active. After being married for 52 years, outliving her husband, she spends a lot of time with her great great grandchildren and even takes a yearly fishing trip with her family.
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you, that’s my way of living.”
Susannah Mushatt Hones, a 115-year-old New Yorker, may be the feistiest of the bunch. Her loves in life are grits, bacon, and eggs, and lacy lingerie. She lost her vision to glaucoma and takes blood pressure medication, but is still quite healthy.
“You can never get too old to wear fancy stuff.”
The youngest of the bunch is Emma Morano-Martinuzzi, and was born just a month before 1900 was ushered in. Her secrets to longevity are eating one raw egg each day and going to bed early and waking up early. Her diet also consists of only a glass of milk for dinner and a daily glass of homemade brandy.
“[D]uring the day I eat two eggs — one raw and one cooked — just like the doctor recommended when I was 20 years old. For lunch I’ll eat pasta and minced meat then for dinner, I’ll have just a glass of milk.”
Each of the ladies offers great advice for living a long and healthy life, but the consistent theme is to have fun and stay active, even in old age.
[Photo Courtesy: the Telegraph U.K.]