It seems that many health and wellness gurus only have an average lifespan, or sometimes even shorter. Robert Atkins, Jim Fixx, and many others all died young, despite their supposedly healthy lifestyles. While this may make you question if health gurus actually know what they're doing, there are some health and wellness experts on the other side of the fence. Some have lived until their late 80s, 90s, or even 100s! What's more is that some of these health icons were born in the 1800s or even earlier. These health and wellness experts who lived long lives give us hope that there really is something to active, healthy lifestyles.
Not all of these experts are in the same field. Some studied the science of nutrition. Some invented new food and diet products. Others created exercise equipment or were just so good at fitness that they're just known for being absurdly healthy. No matter what their health niche was, these individuals beat the odds. Some are still living today!You can see 20 of the health experts who lived the longest on the list below. You might be surprised by the oldest person on this list.
- When the world's oldest professor of nutrition and the founder of nutrition studies in China lives to the age of 110, you know he's doing something right. Zheng Ji died in 2010 of a lung infection, leading us to ask: if he hadn't gotten the infection, how long could this pioneer of nutrition have lived for?
- Age: Dec. at 110 (1900-2010)
- Birthplace: Nakhi people
- Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domainThough her teacher, Krishnamacharya, is also on this list, this actress-turned-yoga-and-health master actually outlived most other yogis in history. As a health guru, she worked in the United States as well as Mexico and South America. She died in 2002 in Buenos Aires, at the ripe old age of 103.
- Age: Dec. at 102 (1899-2002)
- Birthplace: Riga, Latvia
- Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domainIf you've never heard of this lady, it's about time you learn. We wouldn't have occupational health experts if it was not for her, nor would we know about many toxic materials in the industrial workplace. One major thing she studied was how bad lead was for us, and eventually became the only woman on the League of Nations Health Committee. She died in 1970 at age 101 in Hadlyme, Connecticut.
- Age: Dec. at 101 (1869-1970)
- Birthplace: Fort Wayne, Indiana
- Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Fair useYogi, healer, scholar, and health expert, Krishnamacharya is sometimes called the "Father of modern Yoga." If you need more evidence of that, you can look to the fact that he was one of the pioneers of vinyāsa, which is the art of combining breathing and movement. Even up to his death in 1989, he was still lucid and continued to teach his health wisdom whenever he was able.
- Age: Dec. at 100 (1888-1989)
- Birthplace: Chitradurga district, India