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Five keys to a longer life, and the best place to find them

Health and wellness travel is booming. But why seek out destinations that positively impact your well-being, when you can visit an entire nation that seems to have the key to good health and longevity? 


That country is Japan, where life expectancy sits at 85 years. But what are the socio-economic factors that make Japanese, in general, so healthy? 



According to a recent study by Compare the Market, nutrition and medical care is the number one contributing factor when determining a nation’s life expectancy - and the comparison site says “Japan has some of the best healthcare and nutrition ratings around the world.


“The country has been highlighted for its healthy diet, hygiene, and encouragement of exercise amongst all ages,” it said.


After nutrition and medical care, environmental quality has the next biggest impact on long life, while access to information and communications, wealth and literacy also rank highly.       


“Whilst analysing the data for our Key to Life index, not only did we find that nutrition and medical care directly affected a nation’s average life expectancy, but we’re also seeing how Global Warming and harmful emissions have a negative effect on our health and the overall length of our lives,” Compare the Market’s head of product for life insurance, Dan Hutson told Traveltalk.


“It may come as a surprise that happiness placed as one of the lower ranking keys to a longer life, but the correlation between other basic factors, including access to the internet and wealth, prove that they help to build more fulfilled, longer lives in nations around the world.” 


So think about ditching the health and wellness destination for the health and wellness nation, Japan. 


The keys to a longer life: Five factors that correlate the most to a higher life expectancy:

1- Nutrition and Medical Care - 89.53% (correlation) 

2- Environmental Quality - 75.45% 

3- Access to IT and communications - 75.05%

4- Wealth/Capita - 74.19%

5- Adult Literacy Rate - 71.03%


Not so key to a long life: Out of the 20 factors studied, the following have the least correlation with life expectancy: 

20- Employment - —21.44%

19- Tolerance of immigrants - —0.64%

18- Affordable housing - 20.84%

17- Political rights - 51.77%

16- Happiness - 52%


Check out the full results here -


Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 4 November 2018

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