This morning, my alarm told me that it was time to get up for a new day at Bourke Accounting. I put my feet on the floor and my toes went: Snap, Crackle, Pop. I stood up and my knees said: Bing, Bong, Blip. I bent down to kiss the dogs and my back – being very vocal this morning – announced: Crick, Chhhzzzz, Bork.

It seems that, as soon as I hit 29, my body started making funny noises. It must be said that I don’t exactly take care of myself: I don’t get enough sleep, my diet is the same as it was during my starving college days (even though I have the knowledge and resources to eat better now, I still love SpaghettiOs) and I don’t drink enough water.

So, when Bill gave me a copy of The Week with an article about Kane Tanaka, I was intrigued. Ms. Tanaka is a “Japanese great-great-grandmother [who] celebrated her 117th birthday last week” (The Week – Volume 20, Issue 958). She is now in the Guinness Book of Records as the oldest person in the world. After receiving her Guinness certificate, she planned to celebrate by “eating 100 pieces of chocolate” (Thenational.ae).

Every time someone surpasses the standard human lifespan, we ask, well, how did they do that? In Ms. Tanaka’s case, she gets up early, she spends her afternoons studying math and “challenging other care home residents to a round of Othello, her favorite board game” (Thenational.ae). However, perhaps the biggest attributing factor to her longevity might be her eating habits (the 100 chocolates was a fluke, not a habit).

In Japan, there is a dietary practice referred to as “hara hachi bu.” Roughly translated, this means, “belly 80 percent full” (Marieclaire.com). It’s a Confucian “way of life that involves eating only until you are 80 percent full each day” (Marieclaire.com). According to Bluezones.com, this process could explain why Okinawa, for example, “has a higher percentage of centenarians that anywhere else in the world.” It also doesn’t hurt that the Japanese diet is traditionally pretty healthy and high in “Omega-3 fats, known to protect against heart disease” (Thenational.ae).

The benefit of hara hachi bu is apparent when one compares the average caloric intake between a Japanese resident and, say, an American: for men, it’s the difference between 1,900 and 2,500. However, let’s not forget that when the American man hits his 40s, he’ll be “topping out at an average of 2,692” calories (Bluezones.com). Also (again brought to us by Bluezones.com), hara hachi bu stresses eating slowly, paying attention to what you’re digging into (meaning: turn off the TV/computer and actually taste your food) and using “small vessels.” If you put your food on a smaller plate, you’ll naturally eat less and, it’s suggested, that you won’t even notice you’re doing it.

We are not total health nuts at Bourke Accounting (well, Phil might be, he looks awesome), but we know a thing or two. Our Bourke Accounting practitioners are aware that, in order to give you the best in accounting and bookkeeping services, they need to be well-rested and feeling good. We’d like it if you were feeling your best, too. A Bourke Accounting specialist won’t be able to give you eternal youth, but if you allow one of our representatives to assist you with your financial issues, you may find that you sleep better at night. Hey, it’s even possible that you’ll sprout less gray hair with the knowledge that you are in very capable hands.

Come see us any time. Our number is 502-451-8773 and don’t forget to visit our website at www.bourkeaccounting.com. See you soon!

Written by Sue H.