Eat bacon grease, live to be 107 years old

by 593 · January 18, 2014 9:56 PM

I stumbled across this article on Facebook via one of the relatives of this Thousand Oaks, CA woman who just turned 107. Imagine my paleo delight when I read the phrase (bolded below) about bacon grease. Haha. Does anyone else stumble across these anecdotes about longevity, where the young are shocked at how granny could live so long eating such 'unhealthy,' 'fatty' foods?


"Two days before turning 107 years old, Lorena Volz celebrated her birthday with a vodka tonic and chocolate cake topped with candles as she was surrounded by three generations of family members — including several great-grandchildren.

"I don't have a secret. It just happened," said Volz, who was born Oct. 9, 1905. "I guess I got the right genes."

Volz was the guest of honor Sunday at a party in Thousand Oaks at the home of son Don, and daughter-in-law Kay.

"She's pretty cool," said her great-grandchild, 19-year-old Chloe Volz. "I think about how she was born before women could vote. She lived through two world wars and the Depression, and she's still going strong. She's always happy. You never see her not smiling."

"She has a warm attitude and she's always happy," said Chloe's brother, 17-year-old Sam Volz.

Don Volz jokingly attributed his mother's long life to "orneriness, and doing all the wrong things. She ate the worst foods in the world. She cooked her fish in bacon grease and her sister lived to be 100."

"I attribute her longevity to her Finnish and German genes," said her granddaughter, Kathy Mardirossian. "Hopefully, I've inherited them, too."

Born in Oscoda, Mich., Volz lived in Detroit and Saginaw, Mich.; Mesa, Ariz.; and Marco Island, Fla., before moving to Thousand Oaks. She has been living at Hillcrest Manor, an assisted-living home, for seven years.

"We put her in Hillside Manor when she was 100 because she was falling and not doing well. She's been there seven years now, and she just thrives," Kay Volz said. As far as her life span is concerned, "it must be genetic because she did everything — she drank quite a bit and smoked until she was 95."

Volz had odd jobs throughout her life and didn't have one profession, Kay Volz said. She married Harold Volz in 1930, but he died in 1969 and she was on her own for quite a while.

"Lorena is a lovely young lady for 107," said Severino Lozano, a registered nurse at Hillside Manor who has known Volz for several years. "She's very with it. When I first came here to take care of her, she commented on my mustache. She said, 'I don't like that mustache; you need to shave it off.' That's the type of personality she has — she speaks her mind. She's kind of stubborn, and she knows what she wants, so we try not to mess with her routine as much as possible."

Volz is the oldest person who has ever lived at Hillside Manor, Lozano said. "We have one who's 101, but not as with it and together as Lorena. She still watches her football and still reads her paper."

Lozano partly attributes her longevity to her family.

"They are wonderful and always coming to visit and always engaging her," he said. "It's also her attitude. She's very giving and selfless — she engages her family and even strangers. It's very inspiring to see."

In her spare time, Volz enjoys crocheting, doing crossword puzzles and spending time with family.

"The only thing she has is a pacemaker," Kay Volz said. "She just had it replaced a month ago. Her cardiologist said it's good for another 10 years — he said she has the heart of a 25-year-old."


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9 Replies

20222 · October 15, 2012 7:23 PM

My friends aunt is in her 90's. For 30 years she has a hot dog and an orange soda from the vendor near her apartment three times a week for lunch. She eats candy and chocolates and generally very typical SAD food. Probably worse than most. Some people live an amazing long time eating crap. I could eat really well and still die much earlier.

Please stop the magical thinking that paleo (or any diet) is going to make you live x number of years. It won't. Maybe you'll be healthier in the time you have. Enjoy life as fully as you can. Stop worrying about the rest.

130 · October 15, 2012 6:34 PM

Since I've started using bacon grease (and other rendered fats) to cook in my husband's cholesterol has dropped over 100 points, and his b/p is now in the normal's amazing how the paleo lifestyle has helped us get healthier!

77338 · October 15, 2012 7:50 PM

I think the take away is that lard won't kill you young, which isn't the same as making you live longer.

40632 · October 15, 2012 6:56 PM

I can guarantee you that for every centenarian eating bacon there's 1000x 40/50-somethings dropping dead from CVD. Folks that live to 100+ do so in spite of diet often times.

358 · October 16, 2012 5:43 AM

Smoke, drink vodka, eat chocolate cake, live to be 107 years old

That's what I got out of this!!!

But really... I guess it was a combination of genes, her positive attitude and family relationships. I think mental and emotional health and positive relationships contribute to health quite a bit!! And also, genetics........ :) :)

Everyone's different. A few days of vodka and chocolate cake and I feel like a 150 yr old cancer patient on drugs. Add smoking, and, well..... I feel like a corpse.

0 · January 18, 2014 9:56 PM

I like the part about the vodka tonic. I don't like to fry bacon that much, and what I do fry isn't really enough for cooking, but I did find a place to order it online. has it. It's called hot belly bacon grease. You can just google it and go straight to their site.

225 · November 05, 2013 9:58 PM

ive also heard smoking can increase your longevity.....

**rolls eyes**

anecdotes are not evidence ... period.

50 · November 05, 2013 6:18 PM

Note the similarities to this story about Elizabeth Buhler, who lived to age 111 in Manitoba, Canada:

"Buhler's daughter, Justina Suderman, said her mother kept a positive attitude, despite enduring hard times in the former Russian empire and farming during the Great Depression.

Buhler's religious faith and regular exercise were the keys to her longevity, said Suderman, also noting her mother ate whatever she wanted and was fond of cooking with lard."

So I guess lard / bacon grease and a positive attitude are the keys to a long life!

77338 · October 15, 2012 at 11:06 PM

EDIT: Troll

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