Do you know which country has the healthiest hearts? Well, we didn’t either, until a recent study came out that the Bolivian Amazon may very well be home to the healthiest hearts in the world. The study which was published in The Lancet showed that the risk for heart disease is very rare within the Tsimane tribe.
This study shows that if people lived similarly to the Tsimanis, they could avoid coronary atherosclerosis. According to Dr. Gregory S. Thomas, a cardiologist as well as the co-author of the study, by being physically active and not smoking, the Tsimanis keep their LDL cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure very low.
The Tsimane people do not engage in modern luxury, but rather live based on the principles of tribal tradition. They spend most of their time hunting and gathering in the Maniqui River. Just this practice in and of itself makes for around seven hours of physical activity daily. Most people in the modern world spend that amount of time sitting at a desk, and if they do decide to exercise it usually is not for more than an hour.
Further, they do not follow any kind of special diets, and most certainly are not familiar with the low carb diet phenomenon. In fact, they actually consume 72 percent of their daily calories from carbohydrate sources such as sweet potatoes and rice. They consume the around the same amount of protein as Americans, however consume much less fat.
The study found that their dietary patterns together with their high physical activity significantly reduced their risk for high blood sugar, hypertension and obesity. The Tsimanis have the lowest risk for heart disease in the world, and therefore researchers believe that the rest of the world should learn from their lifestyle in order to prolong their lives, health and wellbeing.
Professor Sir Nilesh Samani, who is the medical director of the British Heart Foundation told the Telegraph that although it may be a long shot to believe that the industrialized world can take on such a lifestyle, there are still most certainly aspects of their lifestyle and diet that can be adopted, such as quitting smoking, and eating less fat.