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October 22, 2009

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Home » Metro » Society

City century-breakers honored

SHANGHAI'S centenarians believe the keys to reaching the milestone are good living habits and a loving family.

The city yesterday selected 10 "longevity stars" to mark the Double Nine Festival, five men and five women.

The festival on the ninth day of the ninth month of the lunar calendar pays homage to the elderly.

The eldest "star" is Li Suqing, 110, and the youngest are two 104-year-old men.

Two among the 10 selected one year ago have died, thus this year, two new stars, both from Hongkou District, emerged, the Gerontological Society of Shanghai said.

The society said its studies showed "longevity stars" shared the same characteristics: they are kind and optimistic, go to bed and get up at a fixed time, are not picky eaters and do not drink or smoke.

Li, from Pudong New Area, lives with her caring daughter Tian Yulan.

Tian, 69, bathes her mother every morning, and has been studying herbal remedies aimed at the elderly for several decades. Every winter, Tian prepares a tonic for Li to keep her healthy.

This summer, almost all Li's family members caught a cold - but not her.

"We were amazed by my mother's good health at her age," said Tian.

"Star" Ge Hanmin, 104, lives in Xuhui District, and underwent a cataract operation two years ago so he could take care of his wife, 95.

"My wife suffered a stroke," said Ge. "I can look after her better with full vision."

Hongkou District has three "stars," the most in the city.

Jing'an District, however, had the most centenarians, said the society.

In Jing'an District, about 16 people in 100,000 lived for more than 100 years, officials said.

Up to the end of last year, the city had 836 seniors 100 years and above, 661 women and 175 men.

A zone where seven people in 100,000 live over 100 years is defined as a "longevity area." Up to last year, Shanghai had six people in 100,000, according to the society.


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