Comunanza: the Longevity Village

Panoramic view of Comunanza

Panoramic view of Comunanza

We are more and more interested in learning about how the territory, lifestyle and diet, can influence the well-being and human health. And since thousands of our readers have expressed the same interest, Discovermarche went to Comunanza, a small village in the province of Ascoli Piceno.

Coming from a big city like New York and founding ourselves in Comunanza, made us feel in a place where time passes slowly and where people live respecting the rhythms of nature.

Comunanza: in the past and today

Comunanza: in the past and today

Surrounded by a leafy landscape, the enviroment of Comunanza is favorably influenced by woods and expanses of the Aso Valley, close to the Apennines (mountains). The food is almost exclusively local and people are used to follow a simple and natural diet here. This town is renowned in Italy as well as abroad to be the European-record holder of longevity. Two centenarian sisters, Santina and Carolina Gennari, lived here.

The 'super-centenarian" ladies of Comunanza

The ‘super-centenarian” ladies of Comunanza

The former was 112 years old and was one of the oldest person in the world, while the latter was 104 years old. This extraordinary record, had been supported by the presence in the same village of another 105-year-old woman, Antonina Eusebi, and even by other ninety citizens aged between 85 and 99 years.Comunanza..Those numbers certainly had an impact and increased the curiosity around the secret of longevity of Comunanza inhabitants: a town of three thousand people only!

Some articles written in the newspapers and talking about Comunanza

Some articles written in the newspapers and talking about Comunanza

RASSEGNA STAMPA 2The valuable advice of the two centenarian sisters are collected in the “Menu of Santina and Carolina”, which reveals the secrets of healthy eating, prevention of disease and other tips for living longer.

The longevity menu

The longevity menu

Experts say that to ensure longevity and have a more active old age, in addition to a personal predisposition of the genes, there are other important factors like: clean air (mountain air), daily motion, less stressful rythm of life and healthy foods.

Since it is time to snack, we were excited to taste the famous “panzanella”. This traditional receipe, normally considered ‘peasant food’, becomes a main meal if served with salad and mozzarella cheese or fresh vegetables and Italian raw ham.

The 'Panzanella': a typical Italian bread salad

The ‘Panzanella’: a typical Italian bread salad

We want to share with you the original recipe: wood oven-baked stale bread, chopped ripe tomatoes, olive oil, wine vinegar, mint and chopped fresh garlic (this latter ingredient should not be underestimated because it contains about 400 healthy components. Garlic is one the most powerful antioxidants in nature and has also been considered a powerful and preventive natural substance against cancer by a study conducted in China and America, lately).

We were really pleased with this tour that gave us the opportunity to discover the town of Comunanza and the habits of its citizens. And you? What are you waiting for to visit the ‘Elixir of Long Life’ village?

A special thanks to the Municipality of Comunanza and Terre del Piceno for guiding us in our visit.

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21 thoughts on “Comunanza: the Longevity Village

  1. Reblogged this on Discovermarche and commented:

    The secret for a healthy life is a combination of different things: the diet, the lifestyle and the territory…find out more about the town of ‘Comunanza’ in Le Marche, better known as the “Longevity Village”.

  2. Thanks for including that recipe! I have a couple of small baguettes that are past their prime! Awesome to have the local recipe. I also believe their longevity must be due the living in connection with a close community and with nature. It feels more like a collaboration of living than the competitive world we live in here in the USA. We could learn a lot from them. in lak’ech, Debra

  3. Thanks for your nice comment Debra!
    I agree: the community lifestyle in a sense of helping each other and taking care of local traditions has always been very important there and may also have helped in feeling less stressed out.
    About longevity…let’s try the recipe I posted, it was actually part of their eating-routine…who knows? Let’s give it a try and save some stale bread before it’s too late!:-)

  4. I really enjoyed reading this especially as it concurs with my thinking of healthy food. Exercise. Thanks for this. It seems a great place to visit
    Had forgotten about how good garlic is
    I drink a lot of roobios tea. It’s quite similar

  5. You’re very welcome and I’m glad you’ve found this post interesting!
    Yes, it’s a really nice town to visit together with many others in Le Marche region.
    As I’m pointing out in most of my posts, there are many old traditions that have been handled down from generation to generation, so luckly some good habits are still alive here.
    By the way, I’ve never heard before about rooibos tea…and just found out is has amazing health benefits! Thanks for sharing this info…which is definitely good to know:-)

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