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A Blue Zone... Pura Vida Blue

The Nicoyan’s recipe to live a 100 years.


A harmonious and pacifist society, a large and well preserved biodiversity, a country without an army since 1948, with ¼ of its territory maintained as wild life preserves and a country selected for the second time as the happiest country in the entire planet, add up to a series of positive and very unusual values in the present day world, all converging in a small country called Costa Rica.

As if all these illustrious distinctions were not enough, Costa Rica also posses one other outstanding distinction: Nestled within its territory is the only Blue Zone in all of Latin America. 


Blue Zones? The Blue Zones are a few, small portions of the planet where people live much longer than the norm; areas where persons over 100 years old abound.

(You can read more about the Blue Zones concept in this prior article: or by visiting the website of the authors of the study: ).


Dan Buettner, Blue Zones researcher.

Although the study is an ongoing process, so far very few Blue Zones have been identified in the world, so few in fact that they can be counted with the fingers of a single hand, a widely open hand where the Nicoya peninsula would probably be the thumb.  The other 4 Blue Zones are smaller areas found in California, Japan, Italy and Greece.  Long, satisfying lives are abundant in Costa Rica’s Blue Zone, an area almost as extensive as the other 4 Blue Zones put together.

Throughout all of Guanacaste and doubly so in the Nicoya Peninsula, one can see an unusual number of young kids in their 80s, 90s or 100s, completely lucid and active, riding their bicycle, doing their shopping, fixing their home, cooking the meals for the family or even chopping firewood for the stove. And they are usually smiling!

The Nicoyan recipe for a long and happy life.

Truly there are no major secrets to the unusual longevity of the people of the Nicoya area.  Rather exist a group of clearly identified physical and social elements that together make the magic happen.

Physical elements:

· The rich mineral content of the subterranean water of the province – particularly its high content of calcium and magnesium – fortify the bones and muscles. In addition, the water also contributes a daily supplement of other minerals and ions essential for better functioning at the cellular level, especially for older adults.

· A diet rich in beans and corn have been identified as a beneficial and very healthy dietary combination.

· Regular physical activities, along with doing at least a little work each day without skipping.

· A dry and sunny climate, which is especially beneficial for the elderly, guarantees fewer respiratory illnesses and higher levels of vitamin D.

However, the Nicoyan prescription is not complete until we add the social and philosophical vision that guides the life of the centenarians.

Emotional elements:

· Having a life plan that has been thought out and customized for each individual.

· Living a life free of stress and free of negative thoughts.

· Cultivating solid social and family relationships.

· Appreciating life and living it with an optimistic outlook.

· Knowing (and never forgetting) how to enjoy, how to listen, how to rest and how to laugh…


Interesting, isn’t it?  Put like this it does not appear to be complicated at all!

Would you like to try this recipe? Just put all these ingredients together and mix them well. Then add a huge smile, several photos of your family and friends and a short list of the things most essential to your happiness. Knead all this slowly, cut it in small pieces, bake it for a while under the sun and it’s ready. You can start adding a bite of these healthy Nicoyan biscuits to each and every day!

This longevity recipe that these chefs of life have prepared in Nicoya has proven to be an effective formula, which – without a doubt – at least merits a try.

None of the ingredients are hard to find or things that you can’t cultivate yourself.

A deep appreciation for life, drinking plenty of water, a diet rich in nutrients and minerals, good social, positive feelings, daily physical activity and a life plan to suit the individual – these are things that we can all start doing within a short time.

The recipe for a long life has already come out of its mold and is served on the table.                                  

Those wise Nicoyan centenarians have lovingly unveiled their secrets for us and are inviting each and every one to learn from their experience so that we too, can achieve the benefits of their discoveries.

Are you ready to reach triple digits?   If so, adjust the colors on the canvas of your life and begin to include in your life some more of those Nicoyan hues, a little more of that life enlarging and positivist pigment called PuraVidaBlue!


Want more?

Then watch this video about ‘The secrets of Nicoya’s longlife formula’. 


 We now invite you to read the other articles of this issue on the virtual version of the magazine.




Visit our latest issue on virtual paper
…or see previous issues in our virtual kiosk
utopia magazine and travel guide

What else would you like to see in Utopia Magazine? 

Things to do in Costa Rica

Golf in Guanacaste 

Tico Glossary Catalinas island 

Barra Honda Caves

Rincón de la Vieja

Diving in Guanacaste


Marina Papagayo Medical tourism

What does Pura Vida means? 

MAPS Ecology   Culture   

Hotels in Costa Rica Birds

watching guide MarineTurtles 

Playas del Coco NationalParks 

Transportation guide 

Humpback Whales 


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