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  Tuesday, December 10, 2019
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Japan currently has more than 32 thousand nationals over the age of 100
Japan currently has more than 32 thousand nationals over the age of 100, the country's Health Ministry said Friday. Research carried out by the ministry also noted a rapid increase in the amount of people reaching the 100-year landmark. In 1963, the first year research was carried out in the country, there were a mere 153 people aged 100 or over. Current centenarian numbers stand at 32,295, of which 88% are women, and the figure has increased by a third over the last four years. The oldest person in Japan is Toyonaga Tsuneyo, a 113-year old woman living on the island of Shikoku. She is also the seventh oldest person in the world. The world's oldest person is currently Edna Parker from the U.S. who is 114 years old. She claimed the title when Yone Minagawa, of Japan, died aged 114 in January 2007. There is no clear explanation as to why Japan should have such a large number of centenarians. The Japanese traditional diet, of rice, fish and vegetables, is often put forward as one reason. This does not, however, explain the sudden spurt in longevity seen in the last few years. UN figures put Japan's population in 2006 at 127.7 million. Just over 20% of the population is aged 65 or over and according to estimates, this figure is set to rise to almost 40% by 2050.
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