Identification, Explorations, Research, Certification


Blue Zones is the trademark used to describe the world’s longest-lived cultures and the common characteristics that explain their longevity. It is the vision of Dan Buettner who, with Michel Poulain, identified four of the five blue zones hotspots and has led and aggregated the research to identify the common denominators.  Gianni Pes first used the term blue zone to describe an area of extraordinary longevity in Sardinia’s Nuoro region.  Pes, Poulain and Buettner are Blue Zones co-founders and continue to collaborate to identify, certify, and learn from blue zones hotspots around the world.


BLUE ZONES is a brand and certification mark developed by Michel Poulain, Dan Buettner, and Giovanni Mario Pes when investigating people around the world living longer and better. BLUE ZONES is now a registered trademark owned by BLUE ZONES, LLC, and used by Messrs. Poulain, Buettner and Pes under license. Centenarians exist worldwide but there are only a few areas where their concentration is exceptional so that the population could be considered as living longer.


Ajala, O., P. English, and J. Pinkney. “Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Different Dietary Approaches to the Management of Type 2 Diabetes.” American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (March 2013), 505–16.
Akisaka, M., L. Asato, Y. C. Chan, M. Suzuki, T. Uezato, and S. Uamamoto. “Energy and Nutrient Intakes of Okinawan Centenarians.” Journal of Nutritional Science and Vitaminology (June 1996), 241–48.
Antonogeorgos, G., D. B. Panagiotakos, C. Pitsavos, C. Papageorgiou, C. Chrysohoou, G. N. Papadimitriou, and C. Stefanadis. “Understanding the Role of Depression and Anxiety on Cardiovascular Disease Risk, Using Structural Equation Modeling; The Mediating Effect of the Mediterranean Diet and Physical Activity: The ATTICA Study.” Annals of Epidemiology (September 2012), 630–37.


1999  Dan Buettner organizes expedition to Blue Zones area of Okinawa
2000  Michel Poulain and Gianni Pes publish first article describing the Blue Zones area of Sardinia
2004  Michel Poulain and Gianni Pes publish research on Sardinia
2005  “Secrets to Long Life” cover story for National Geographic first identifies Okinawa and Loma Linda as Blue Zones areas—by Dan Buettner
2005  Dan Buettner first trademarks Blue Zones term in the United States
2006  First National Geographic expedition to Nicoya Peninsula, Michel Poulain leads verification effort, Dan Buettner leads overall team
2007 Second National Geographic expedition to Nicoya (“Blue Zones Quest”) to search for longevity explanation.


“The Island Where People Live Longer,” NPR Weekend Edition interview with Dan Buettner. May 2, 2009.

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“The Secrets of Long Life,” by Dan Buettner. National Geographic, November 2005.

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Dan Buettner CR

“If you like a mystery, you’re going to love this.” By DAN BUETTNER. ABC News

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“The Island Where People Forget to Die,” by Dan Buettner. New York Times Magazine, October 2012.

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“Blue Zones: What the Longest-Lived People Eat (Hint: It’s Not Steak Dinners),” by Patrick Mustain. Scientific American, April 6, 2015.

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“Can ‘Blue Zones’ Help Turn Back the Biological Clock?” NPR Weekend Edition with Dan Buettner, June 8, 2008.

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