Tuesday, September 19, 2006

A Nation of Long-Lived People

September 18th was national holiday in Japan called “Keirou-no-hi (敬老の日)” which was born in Japan. This is translated “Respect-for-the-Aged Day” in English. “Keirou-no-hi” is a day to love and respect old people who rendered to society for a long time, and celebrate their long life. This day is celebrated on the third Monday in September.

I haven’t done anything to my grandparents, but I am thinking to bake a cake for them. My maternal grandfather is 76 years old and grandmother is 73 years old. They had surgery a few years ago, but are very fine today.

Japan is a nation of long-lived people. World Health Organization (WHO) published the World Heath Report on September 7th. According to the report, countries which have the longest average life span in the world in 2004 are Japan, Monaco and San Marino, and the average life span is 82 years old. The average life span for Japanese female is 86 years old, and for Japanese male is 79 years old. The shortest life span country is Zimbabwe in Africa, 36 years old.

According to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare in Japan, a population of full 100 years old or more Japanese is 25,554. Female is 21,775 and male is 3,779.

The most aged woman in Japan is Yoko Minakawa, 113 years sold in Fukuoka, and man is Tomoji Tanabe, 111 years old. Tomoji cerebrated his 111th birthday on Keirou-no-hi. He said the secret of long life is not to drink alcohol.

I think the reasons of long-life span in Japan are good food and medical technology. Japanese food, washoku is very fatless, well-nourished and healthy. Japanese food is even eaten for diet food in other countries. Besides, medical technology develops day by day and it keeps people live longer with surgery or medicine.


Pierre-Yann said...

It's strange, here in France, we have now the totally inverse thing:
Instead of having a national holiday, which can be used to help relative old person (as the rest of the year), we now have one more working day (one national holiday was deleted) to improve the state economie, so the state can help resourceless old persons with this money.

What also strange for me is that I ever read that a stressed life is bad for having a long life, but, from here, we see Japan as a very stressing place to live

kayanon said...


Hahaha, "we see Japan as a very stressing place to live" You know, whole Japan is not like Tokyo. I agree Tokyo might be stressing place to live, but things are very different in other area.

soursop said...

wow, i've never thought about that until pierre-yann pointed out these contrary facts about Japan ^^

so far i've heard a lot that Japanese people can live long and smart mainly because they like to eat fish, eggs, and raw food.

kayanon said...


That's true eating more fish and less meat is good for health, and most Japanese eat like that. Now, Japan is getting westernized, so people eat more meat than before.

Kuntry Konfession said...

what is woshoku?
-i bet the kuntry air out there is awesome-with the mountains and the mountain water.. the rice fields i bet is also good for the mind.....
i think it's awesome you have elder people day! there are a lot of wisdom in the ancient, i think kids sometimes forget....learning history from them is very essential- and enriches!
i like listening to folks that are older than seemed that life was rougher back in the day with the sweat and toils they have to go through to survive-yet...they did it and survived... which i think says a lot....modern life now seemed more intricate with technology...(some are fine!)-but the "remote control" for a remote control is just so unnecessary and makes us fat and lazy in mind and body. hahahah!
so here is to all grandparents!

kayanon said...


Washoku means Japanese food. Air is very different like you said between here and tokyo. I cannot discibe it propaly but clear here.

More I am with grandparents or older people, more I get wisdom from them. They know how to lead a life well.

Ragge said...

Yeah, here in Norway we have always been told that workers in japan is very stressed and unhealth. Good to hear that is not the rule for intire Japan.
I think the recipe for a long life is fish, vegetables, water, excercise and LOVE :-D But I can't say I'm following it to the full...

kayanon said...


If whole japan is like tokyo, people would die soon because of not only stress but also bad enviroment.

Yeah, your rule is right. fish is much better than meat. I think I need more vegetables and love formy long life ^^;

kieran said...


Great pictures fo the rice harvest! Thanks.
I wanted to say that Japan recently turned around: the lifespan had been increasing and increasing but I saw a news show about 2 months agao in Japan that said it is now decreasing. I think the 86 year old women and 79 year old men are so healthy because their diet was so good, especially when they were young. But now its not good, as I'm sure you know. Young people prefer high fat and high salt foods (Rahmen and hamburgers for example) and it was predicted that the Japanese will start dying younger.


kayanon said...

thank you for your comment, keran! Yeah, that's true, food is changing in japan. young people preger instant or jank food. I don't think japanese will die younger rapidly. people still eat plenty of fish in japan, and now is fitness boom here. so people care about their health at least.

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