Ko’olaupoko has been designated a Blue Zone Demonstration Project

Our ambitious goal is to create a healthier and more resilient Kaneohe, 96744 through grassroots community involvement and policy efforts.

The initiative is the brainchild of journalist Dan Buettner, who has spent the past 12 years studying why, in certain pockets of the world—from Nicoya, Costa Rica, to Okinawa, Japan, to Sardinia, Italy—people live well into old age with stunningly low rates of disease. Buettner discovered that residents of these Blue Zones, as researchers called them, shared some important similarities: They didn’t smoke or eat much meat, they walked constantly and they maintained robust social lives.

We are organizing Kaneohe and all of Ko’olaupoko to be one of the first in Hawaii to become a Blue ZoneProject demonstration site. The Kaneohe Neighborhood Board, PACT and many other community organizations support the Blue Zones Project.  Now the work begins. We are bringing community leaders together to plan how the program can be implemented in Kaneohe first and then expanded to all of Ko`olaupoko.

That was 2015.

Now it is 2019 and the project is winding down. What was accomplished? Some grocery stores set up a special checkout aisle where they sold fruit instead of candy. A few restaurants included Blue Zone healthy meals on their menus. The held cooking classes on how to prepare healthy meals. The taught classes in “How to find your purpose in life.”

They set up a helpful website at https://info.bluezonesproject.com/bzphawaii

What they were not able to do was get the community actively involved. What started out as a community-based project fizzled out and was finally abounded around 2017. The Kaneohe/Koolaupoko project was extended one year. Now the project is coming to an end. Like so many worthy projects, Blue Zone Koolaupoko seems destined to just fade away.

You will see reference to the Blue Zone Project and principles throughout this website in the future. But now the future of Blue Zone Koolaupoko is up to us. If you choose to live the Blue Zone lifestyle you have a good chance of becoming a healthy, active, productive Centarian.

Here are the 9 Principles of Living the Blue Zone Lifestyle

  1. Down Shift – Leave work at work and learn to relax.
  2. Social Hour – Take an hour to visit with friends.
  3. Live Life with Purpose – Know what is important in your life and take time to work on the important things every day.
  4. Associate with positive, supportive people.
  5. The 80 rule – stop eating when you are 80% full. Eat 20% of the bag of chips, not the whole thing.
  6. Belong – People who meet with friends regularly live longer. It may be a club or a church.
  7. Eat a plant-based diet. You don’t have to become a vegetarian. Just eat meat less often.
  8. Move naturally – build physical activity into your lifestyle.
  9. Family First – There is nothing more important than your family. Take time to do things with them at least weakly. Get outside and take a local hike. Go to the beach. Have a picnic in the park.

That’s it. You know how to live a long, productive and happy life. You genes are only 20% of the picture. The rest involves living in a healthy environment. You can control your environment. How you live your life is up to you.