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Japan Has the Most People Over 100

Old Is Great If You're Not Sushi! Japan's Record Centenarians


Well, if there's no other reason to live to the ripe young age of 100, in Japan you get a silver cup and a congrats card from the prime minister if you do. I hope he's bought those suckers in bulk because almost 20,000 Japanese are set to turn 100 this year alone. And they'll have many, many friends in their 5-k age class — there are already 36,276 centenarians in Japan, up a whopping 4,000 since last year. The UN projects that by 2050 there will be almost a million people over 100 in Japan alone. That's 100 gabillion birthdays between them, believe me, I did the math.

Those birthdays almost all warranted pink birthday hats, too — 86 percent of the century club are women. The oldest gal is 113 years old and lives on the island of Okinawa, the oldest man is 112 and likes to write in his diary in the evening. Oh, I want to matchmake these two. The reasons for the good long lives: healthy diet, good medical care, and strong communities — and exercise. Sounds like an easy recipe, right?

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