HAVANA. - After the death a few days ago of the most aged person of the world, the 117-year-old Japanese Chiyo Miyako, the "title" relapsed into one from the same country, 115-year-old Kane Tanaka.

The Japanese are known by their steadfastness and balanced life style, two of the keys for a long and healthy life.

It is no wonder then that 12.5 per cent of its population overcome 75 years or more and another two per cent already crossed the curve of the 90.

In fact, the country of the nascent Sun has the biggest proportion of centenaries of the world, with more than 67 thousand persons who overcome the century of life.

Nevertheless, this number means also a social, political and economic challenge for the third world potency, with 127 million inhabitants.

When the Japanese authorities began to compile this information in 1963, the number of citizens with more than one century of life was promoting 153, number that 35 years later, in 1998, would overcome for the first time the 10 thousand.

According to the last report of the Ministry of Health, Work and Well-being, this tendency will continue principally due to the medical advances and the campaign to raise public awareness of the Japanese on the slightly healthy life styles.


During decades, scientists of the whole world have been interested in the secret of the longevity of the Japanese and they studied meticulously the elements that differentiate the habits of life of this region of the rest of the world.

Although very much it has been speculated on the incidence of the diet, low fat and rich in vegetables and fish, the experts think that it would be to simplify too much a more complex phenomenon.

Studies of the Institute of Gerontology and of the Center for the investigation of Super-centenaries of Tokyo concluded that the factors for the longevity go from the proper genetics, the upbringing, the social development, the physical exercise, up to the climate of the area of residence and the quality of the sanitary services.

Nevertheless, the feeding is one of the foci that more attention attracts and in The Japanese method to live 100 years, a book of the journalist Junko Takahashi, tens Japanese centenaries affirmed that to eat few quantities, to chew very much the food and to balance the fish with the meat, there are some of the keys to overcome a century of life.

Although to reach 100 is a blessing and this way the Japanese celebrate it, while more elders are in the country, major is the social security load for the population who works actively.

In 2017, the demography decreased for the seventh year in a row and the most recent census demonstrated that in the last five years, Japan lost almost a million persons.

Information of the Interior State Department points out that of the entire population, 27 per cent they are older than 65 years, a serious problem for the Japanese authorities for the cost that it has, not only at level of protection and social security, but also for the productive system.

Projections of the government aim that for 2060 the number of inhabitants will come down to 87 million, of which almost 40 per cent will be in the third age.

The rapid aging in the Asian nation affects straight in the economy and has to look for alternatives to support the indexes of growth of Japan.

In the long term, the aging will reverberate in the expenses of the budget of the country and the government predicts for 2025 a payment of up to 27 per cent of the Gross Internal Product in social welfare.


Before this situation, they also look for mechanisms to be able to correct in short and medium term the adverse effects that this situation has for the economy and to support the position of Japan in the international stage.

Among the measurements to resist the tendency, the executive of the prime minister, Shinzo Abe, established like priority to impel the birth rate across fiscal incentives and facility for the care of the children, especially among the increasing number of female workers.

The Abenomics, a series of economic measurements impelled by the Japanese leader, aspire to settle this problem of an integral way, to extract to the country of the stagnation.

The strategy defined in 2016 to face the negative face of the longevity has also a human approach and tries to offer opportunities in the old age.
To find labor niches where the elderly could keep on being useful to the country and to increase their general income, including the pension, is one of the targets.

The "Plan of Dynamic Commitment of All the Citizens of Japan", implies making sure that the persons could be supported in a voluntary way linked to the labor system.

In addition, the government considers starting a project to support and to develop an environment so that the companies keep on employing the citizens after 65 years.