Because Roseto’s residents were so surprisingly healthy compared to the rest of the United States, researches, once they learned of the health differences, began to study every aspect of the residents’ lives to find the cause of their good fortune.
Joe Stampone, a relative of one of the founding fathers of Roseto, Pennsylvania, explains why early researchers were so intrigued: “Virtually no [resident] under 55 died of a heart attack; for men over 65, the death rate from heart attack was half that of the United States as a whole; and the death rate from all causes was 35% lower than it should have been. There was no suicide, no alcoholism, no drug addiction, and little crime to speak of. No one was on welfare and no one even suffered from peptic ulcers. These people died of old age. That’s it!”
So, what kept these Italians so healthy?