In the Middle Ages, “old age” came much quicker. In fact, the average life expectancy was only about 31 years of age!
But there was one group of men who routinely defied the odds and lived well into their 60s—sometimes even their 70s.
That accomplishment was so rare and mysterious, the men were said to have the “divine gift” of long life. But if you ask me, they didn’t have a mysterious gift after all…
Rather, they just had better diet and lifestyle habits than most everyone else in Europe.
The best part? You too can defy the odds and BOOST your longevity—even in 2022!
Let me explain…
Four ways the Knights of Templar ate and lived well
For nearly 200 years, during the bleakest part of the Middle Ages, members of the Knights Templar had nearly double the life expectancy of the rest of Europe.
As you may know, members of this Roman Catholic military order protected European travelers to the Holy Land in Jerusalem after the Muslims were driven out in the first Crusade. Usually, they died in combat or at the hands of their enemies, rather than from illness.
But no matter how they died, it’s how they lived that really matters. Because it gives us insight into their remarkable longevity…
For one, we know the Knights always ate quietly and slowly—together in community. And as I’ve written before, keeping up with social engagement is a HUGE factor in supporting healthy aging.
Second, we know that they followed a very healthy, balanced diet that closely resembles the modern Mediterranean diet…
Specifically, they ate meat three nights a week. On Sundays, they always consumed some kind of roasted meat (often bacon, beef, and ham, with plenty of salt for curing and seasoning). Not to mention, the higher-ranking members had meat for both lunch and dinner on Sundays.
Plus, the portions were likely considerable and available “in plenty.” In fact, one source cited that they loaded enough meat onto their plates to “feed two poor men with the leftovers.”
The Knights abstained from eating meat the other nights of the week. But even on three of those lighter, meat-free days, they still typically enjoyed cheese, eggs, and milk as well as vegetables and bread. They also ate potage (made with oats or pulses), gruel, or fiber-rich vegetable stews.
On Fridays, they observed a Lenten fast, consuming just salted fish and nuts. (Though, interestingly, the injured or weak abstained from these fasts and ate meat and dairy to help return them to “good health.”)
They also mixed healthy spices, such as cumin, into their cooking. And they grew their own fruits and vegetables, particularly Mediterranean produce—such as almonds, figs, olives, and pomegranates.
They also drank wine “in moderation” and diluted it with water. (The alcohol probably sanitized the water supply.)
Third, the Knights practiced good hygiene. They always washed their hands before eating, cooking, or praying. This simple practice, probably helped them avoid many of the deadly infections circulating around Europe.
Lastly, the Knights always spent time sitting in silence and expressing gratitude after meals. That routine likely helped support their health, too. Because, as I’ve often mused, gratitude is one of life’s healthiest feelings. Expressing it has tremendous benefits to your mind and body. It can even add a decade to your life!
(You can learn more about the importance of gratitude to your health and longevity in the November 2019 issue of Insiders’ Cures, my monthly newsletter [“The pill-free secret to adding a decade—or more—onto your lifespan”].)
Of course, we now know more about the science of how to stay vibrant, youthful, and healthy well into advanced old age than the Knights did 1,000 years ago. You can explore all the latest science on the simple, natural, healthy aging strategies in my online learning protocol, The Insider’s Ultimate Guide to Outsmarting “Old Age.” To learn more, or to enroll today, click here now!