As we prepare for all the big feasts that usually go along with the special seasonal holidays that are just around the bend- I wonder if this past Thanksgiving or Christmas was the last time you sat at a table and “broke bread” with friends and loved ones without looking at your cell phone checking the time?

Those who study Longevity and particularly the behaviors of Centenarians all over the world find that one of the fundamental secrets of living a vital and happy life is to share meals with people. Another interesting fact is that these “Vitalians” tend to “linger” around the table and “savor” the activity of eating and talking. In other words- eating is considered a social experience. In France and Italy, meals can take up to 2 -3 hours. No special occasion, no big holiday- people come together to tell stories and share much more than the meal that they partake of.

We Westerners have come to pride ourselves in our ability to Power through lunch. We get rapidly prepared food and have become very efficient at eating and talking on the phone or finishing off the power point presentation due in the afternoon. We then leave work and pick up children and taxi them to various sports activities or head to the gym. By the time we think about dinner- well, let’s face it- we are almost on empty. What do most of us do? We head for the nearest fast food or take out place we can find.

I invite you to watch this very short video about the French and their philosophy about eating. Notice how you FEEL as you view people laughing and sharing in such a relaxed manner. IMAGINE that this could be you and your friends and loved ones. Don’t wait until Thanksgiving! Gather some friends together and break bread!

My very best wishes for an exceptional day and to your long and vital life.

Ellie Lamson