How long you live is not de­cided by just what you eat

China Daily (Canada) - - NEWS CAPSULE -

Zhuang au­ton­o­mous re­gion in South China is known as the “home­town of longevity”, as more than 1,000 of its res­i­dents, out of a pop­u­la­tion of some 200,000, are more than 90 years old, among which 81 are cen­te­nar­i­ans. As a re­sult, some lo­cal spe­cial­ties are be­ing la­beled and sold as longevity foods. Bei­jing News com­ments:

Sci­en­tists say the wa­ter, soil and air in the re­gion are spe­cial be­cause of the strong ge­o­mag­netic field in the area. But even if the lo­cal food is good for peo­ple’s health, which is sup­posed to be a defin­ing char­ac­ter­is­tic of all food, it is im­proper to di­rectly ad­ver­tise them as “longevity food”.

The rules on food la­bel­ing in China clearly stip­u­late the food pro­duc­ers and sell­ers should not de­scribe or pro­mote food in a mis­lead­ing man­ner to boost sales.

It was lo­cal nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment and the res­i­dents’ tra­di­tional life­styles— all were farmers in the moun­tains be­fore the devel­op­ment of the lo­cal tourism in­dus­try— that have led to their good health.

Bama’s rep­u­ta­tion does help sell lo­cal food prod­ucts. But the “longevity food” pro­duc­ers and sell­ers can­not pro­vide any con­vinc­ing ev­i­dence tes­ti­fy­ing to any di­rect re­la­tion­ship be­tween their food and a long life.

Wor­ry­ingly, the in­flux of large num­bers of tourists and peo­ple who visit Bama hop­ing its en­vi­ron­ment can cure their ill­nesses are polluting the wa­ter and soil. The qual­ity of the lo­cal soil and wa­ter is not as good as it used to be.

The food and market ad­min­is­tra­tive de­part­ments should in­ves­ti­gate whether la­bel­ing the food as “longevity food” breaks the law.

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