Looking for a village in Azerbaijan

Ok. Here’s a toughie. I remember a while back watching on either CNN or BBC World a report about a village in I believe Azerbaijan or otherwise in the Caucas region. It’s a village that is known to have the world’s highest life expectancy. I was unable to find the magic combination of words on altavista to find this place…the best I could do is a home page of kefir which claims people in Azerbaijan have a life expectancy of 110-150 years (?!) Does anybody out there have any idea of where this village is?

Actually, I think it was Georgia. Do a search on “Georgia Centenarians” and you might find more.


Actually, after pecking around for a bit more, I did narrow it down. There is a guy…actually two in Azerbaijan who are supposedly 168 and 155 years old. Shirali Mislimov and Shirin Gasanov. No mention of their villages, unfortunately.
No this is not an academic exercise…I want to head out there soon.

Well if you find any more information on it share it please. I am curious as to why the life expentancy would be so high.

Aha! The web finally pays off: the article below discusses Azerbaijani life expectancy, and names a number of individuals and regions that might ring some bells.

(PS In web searches, it doesn’t help that the names are often different - Gasanov, Hasanov etc)

Centenarians in Azerbaijan

Beautiful, matt! Exactly what I was looking for.

As for the question on longetivity, from what I can gather on the web pages, it’s a combination of stuff. High altitude, physical exercise, and kefir somehow fits into this equation. I have a friend who visited a Bulgarian village which also had an unusually high centerians per capita rate, and the doctors there said it was lots of sex, yogurt and plum brandy. Whatever the case may be, she said the people seemed to be having a good time. I guess low stress would also figure into it. Perhaps genetics, as well. It’s anyone’s guess, but I find it quite fascinating that there are people who claim to be in their mid-150s. Whether the bookkeepping to ascertain such a claim exists (no) I wouldn’t discount it, necessarily.

There was once a cartoon by Sidney Harris with the quote, “Our reputation for longevity is based on three things: A simple diet, regular exercise, and an inability to count properly.”. How true this is in this particular case, I know not.

Perhaps genetics, as well.
Now you are talking, Puty. Some kefir and/or plum brandy (plum vodka, actually) will not hurt. I think, relocation by itself won’t help much.

I believe you may be chasing a snark.

There was an article I read about 10 or 15 years ago (Scientific American perhaps) that looked into the claims of extreme longevity made by various groups including the Soviet (at that time) Georgian group(s) that were featured in the Dannon yogurt commercials.

The conclusion was these claims of 110+ ages are virtually all false and while these folks are old they are not 100+ but typically 80-90ish as expected relative to their health and overall condition.

IIRC one of the most interesting reasons why many of these claims of extreme age were centered in these Georgian population groups had to do with the fact that during WWII many younger men used older relatives identification cards/papers/birth records etc to put them beyond the age for compulsory military service. These claims typically
added 20-40 years of age and this fiction was maintained in official documents until many of these men died.