Health

The Best Reason Ever to Eat Bacon Everyday

October 12th 2015

By:
Laura Donovan

The world's oldest living person, 116-year-old Susannah Mushatt Jones, is reportedly a big fan of bacon—a cut of pig that can be detrimental to your health. Jones consumes bacon daily.

Jones, who lives in a Brooklyn nursing home, keeps a strict daily routine, according to the New York Post. She is up every morning at 9:30 AM and helps herself to some bacon and scrambled eggs. She has fruit and lunch in the afternoon, and for dinner, “she feeds herself” a set plate of meat, potatoes, and vegetables and always goes for the meat before the other foods, according to an aide at the facility.

"She’ll eat bacon all day long,” the aide said.

But don't jump to conclusions.

While she may eat bacon every day, we cannot simply draw a correlation from bacon to her longevity. Jones recently told the Guinness Book of World Records that "sleep" is to thank for her long life. Ten years ago, the New York City Housing Authority honored her community contributions, and she said at the time that she has lived a long life due to abstaining from alcohol and cigarettes, among other things.

“I never drink or smoke," she said. "I surround myself with love and positive energy. That’s the key to long life and happiness.”

Dr. Thomas Perls, director of the New England Centenarian Study at Boston Medical Center and Boston University professor of medicine, told Live Science that Jones probably has good "genes that make up for" her bacon love.

"By no means should anyone, therefore, think that eating bacon is good for them because [Jones] eats bacon," Perls told the publication. "She's very lucky. She can eat all the bacon she wants and live to 116."

Perls has been studying life length for 20 years and said he has not found a correlation between bacon consumption and living a long time. In fact, an extensive study from Harvard University found the opposite to be true. The research looked at 120,000 people and found those who eat a daily serving of processed red meat (i.e., bacon) increase their chances of death by 20 percent. Bacon is also loaded with sodium, which increases your chances of getting high blood pressure and heart disease.

Jones was born on July 6, 1899 and became the age record holder at 115 years and 346 days old on June 17, 2015, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Jones is one of two known living people who were alive during the 1800s.

Two years ago, Jones' oldest niece, 81-year-old Lavilla Mushatte Watson told CBS New York that Jones has made it this far in life without having to see many doctors.

“She’s tough, but she knew that somehow if she exposed herself to all those medical procedures it’s going to kill her," Watson said. "She never had a mammogram, never had colonoscopy, like we have, never had none of that. She eats well, sleeps well, didn’t party, never wore make up, never dyed her hair."