Living a good, long life is the dream, and many people live well into their 90s, but the world’s oldest person lived to be a remarkable 117!
What’s the secret to her longevity?
Emma Morano was born on November 29, 1899 in Italy and passed away at her home recently. She is believed to have been the last surviving person born in the 1800s.
Emma was the eldest of 7 siblings and outlived all of them. Part of her aging secret, she says, is genetics, but there’s something interesting about her daily diet, too.
She ate 3 eggs a day, 2 of them raw! She started this daily egg diet after a doctor diagnosed her with anemia after World War One. She also rarely ate fruit or vegetables and preferred a meat-based diet, go figure.
Her doctor of 27 years, Carlo Bava, noted: “When I met her, she ate three eggs per day, two raw in the morning and then an omelet at noon, and chicken at dinner.”
Dr. Bava told The Associated Press, via NBC News that Emma’s caretaker notified the doctor of her passing. She was sitting in an armchair in her apartment.
He explained that he had last seen her the previous week, when “she thanked me and held my hand.”
Emma eventually spent more time sleeping and less time speaking, according to the report, but still had her daily raw eggs.
Bava added: “She didn’t suffer. I’m happy she didn’t suffer but passed away that way, tranquilly” and noted that “She was slowly fading away” in recent weeks.
Emma also removed herself from a bad marriage, kicking out her abusive husband in 1938 after her baby died at 6 months old. In a 2015 interview, Bava noted that she “abandoned the husband in the Fascist era, when women were supposed to be very submissive. She was always very decisive.”
As this news piece points out, Emma was born four years before the Wright brothers flew the first airplane and she lived through some difficult times in history, including two world wars.
She also worked until she was 75 years old, first in a factory making jute bags, then at a hotel. Eventually, she didn’t leave her one-room apartment for 20 years.
Emma explained, “My life has not been very good. I worked until I was 65 years old.” Emma joins the record books as having had the fifth longest life ever recorded.
Commenters on the story noted: “I was hoping that Emma would’ve at least lived long enough to beat Jeanne Calment’s record who ironically died nearly 20 years earlier on August 4, 1997 but when the human body can’t go on then it just can’t go on, RIP.”
Another added: “I was talking with my friend about her today hoping she’s still alive. I said that if she keeps alive for the next 5 years she’ll be the world’s oldest person ever to have lived (recorded) but nah. R.I.P. the 1800’s.”
The Gerontology Research Group notes that the world’s oldest registered human is now Violet Brown from Jamaica, who was born on March 10, 1900.