Dr Leila Denmark has recently died at the age of 114. A remarkable woman she was still working as a pediatrician at the age of 103. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leila_Denmark Apparently she refused cake at her 110th birthday party claiming she hadn't eaten sugar for 70 years (so she was 40 when she gave it up - there is hope for us late starters!). Does anyone know any more about her diet? Seems as though whatever it was she was on the right lines.
i think a big aspect people often forget about when it comes to longevity is mental health and social health. diet obviously plays a role but its not the be all and end all in living for a long time.
Just wanted to add. I've not eaten sugar in over a year, except minimal fruit a few times a week. The other night, I put a teaspoon of honey in my herbal tea because I was out of stevia...holy crap, it tasted like I put 10 spoons of sugar in there! It was so sweet I couldn't believe it. I remember back in my old SAD days I had to put 3-4 tsp of honey in my tea to taste it. Giving up sugar really changes your taste for sweet.
Refined sugar is indisputably damaging to the immune system. It is a depleter of nutrients. In its natural unstripped form it is loaded with minerals and vitamins. Refined it has nnne which means it has to rob from whatever stores of nutrients you have in order to have the necessary co factors for the chemical reactions to metabolise it. Undefined it is food. Refined it is no longer food but a toxin. Go study Weston Prices work. Everywhere he went, people who ate their traditional nutrient dense diets, devoid of nutritionally stripped refined carbohydrates and other refined foods of modern industrialized countries the people were robust and didn't have degenerati disease dental decay or crowded teeth. Un
My guess would be that she has great genes. But outside of that I found this quote in the LA Times "As she approached her 110th birthday, Denmark credited her longevity to drinking only water, eating no refined sugars and including a protein and vegetable with every meal." I bet the latter half of that arrangement provided more health benefits than the former.
No refined sugars says to me she may not have been above honey and other sweet things. While I think the sugar avoidance possibly helped her to thrive, I think the connection is mostly anecdotal. Personally, I follow more of a PHD approach with a sprinkling of Peat, so I do eat some sugar. I would say I actually eat a fair amount of sugar in the form of ice cream, sugared coffee and gummy worms... however, I am the healthiest person I know (knock on wood). By healthy I mean, great blood markers, never sick, no chronic health conditions.. no allergies, etc. In the spirit of full disclosure I should mention I also include a protein and vegetable with every meal ;)
So... Who knows?