More people from the village of Yuzurihara, Japan live beyond age 85 than do people anywhere in the entire United States, according to a report on HealthWomen.com. These people live long productive lives and have youthful skin, optimal joint flexibility and minimal health issues such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Dr Toyosuke Komori, the town’s doctor and author of five books on Yuzurihara, suggests the reason for the youthful healthiness is due to a low-iron, sticky vegetable-based diet that promotes hyaluronic acid levels in the body 1.

History

Yuzurihara is a village about two hours outside of Tokyo, Japan. The World Health Organization in Japan surveyed the 990 inhabitants and found the villagers to have extraordinary longevity.

Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid is found naturally in all living organisms and is a gel-like component that exists between cells and connective tissue. In synovial fluid, it acts as a cushion for joints and nerves to prevent degeneration, according to the Pain Clinic website. Hyaluronic acid hydrates skin and hair and moisturizes the eyes 1.

Food Sources of Hyaluronic Acid

The source of hyaluronic acid in Yuzurihara is the local diet 13. They primarily consume sticky carbohydrates such as satoimo, which is a sticky white potato; a type of sweet potato and imoji, which is a potato root. If you are not in Japan, there are other foods you can eat that contain hyaluron or stimulate the production of hyaluronic acid in your body, according to SteadyHealth.com 12. These foods include:

  • potatoes
  • sweet potatoes
  • broccoli
  • cauliflower
  • asparagus
  • green beans
  • peppers
  • citrus fruits
  • berries
  • cherries
  • bananas
  • brown rice
  • pumpkin
  • beans
  • parsley
  • cilantro

Dietary Fiber

Cornell University reported that fiber from 10 grams of soybeans per day may increase beneficial bacteria in the gut and reduce carcinogenic enzymes, correlating dietary fiber and aging. They suggested the prevalence of centenarians in Yuzurihara may be due to a high fiber diet. A study from the Institute of Physical and Chemical Research in Japan examined the feces of 84-year olds in the Yuzurihara area, compared with those of 68-year olds in Tokyo. They found that anaerobic bacteria, a bacteria that can cause diseases and infection, was significantly lower in the people of Yuzurihara than those in Tokyo. They concluded that the variation may be due to differences in intake of dietary fiber.

Hyaluronic Acid Preparations

Hyaluronic acid is available as a supplement but there is some controversy over its use. An article on BetterNutrition.com reports that hyaluronic supplements may be destroyed by stomach acid, making them ineffective 2. If buying hyaluronic supplements, choose reputable brands from your health food store. With recommended dosage, it may take several weeks for an effect to be noticed.

The Food and Drug Administration approved hyaluronic acid as a dermal filler to correct wrinkles and soft tissue damage resulting from advancing age 1. The 2008 “Clinical Interventions on Aging” recognized hyaluronic acid’s innate properties for the management of the aging face 13.

Topical hyaluronic acid applications are also available.

The Wrap Up

Dr Toyosuke Komori, the town’s doctor and author of five books on Yuzurihara, suggests the reason for the youthful healthiness is due to a low-iron, sticky vegetable-based diet that promotes hyaluronic acid levels in the body. An article on BetterNutrition.com reports that hyaluronic supplements may be destroyed by stomach acid, making them ineffective. Soybeans (full frame) Cornell University reported that fiber from 10 grams of soybeans per day may increase beneficial bacteria in the gut and reduce carcinogenic enzymes, correlating dietary fiber and aging.

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