Q – I think I am married to a “saint”. So do my friends. I’ve been working in the Publishing field for the past fourteen years and I have found myself working more and more on health-related publications. I did have a bout with Cancer a few years back and my husband has made up his mind to follow my health-related whims in terms of exercise and what we eat. Now, for a bunch of reasons I won’t go into here, we are ready to start traveling internationally. We have only been to London previously so there is lots of the world to see while we can still do it comfortably. So here is where it gets a bit odd – I have this thing in my head that as long as we can create our own bucket list, why not set a goal of visiting the ten “healthiest” countries on the planet in terms of life expectancy, smoking, obesity, and heart disease, and access to clean water. Also – a healthy diet, of course. Is there any way you might come up with a Bucket List for us of, what you might consider, the “healthiest places in the world”? Or, to stay really healthy, should we just stay in the United States. Thanks so much for this awesome site.
A – There actually is some hard research on this subject using empirical evidence. The Bloomberg Healthiest Country Index is one of the most credible. To start you off for a few years, let’s look at the Five healthiest places to visit.
# 1 – Spain (Highest Overall Life Expectancy)
# 2 – Italy (Starting to see the value of Olive Oil?)
# 3 – Iceland
# 4 – Japan
# 5 – Switzerland
The United States ranks 35th, behind, among others, Cuba, Malta, Chile, and Slovenia.
There are many ways to construct your own personal bucket list. We think that choosing destinations based on the overall good health of their citizens, is a rather smart way to design your travels.