A retired Japanese farmer officially became the world’s oldest man at 112 years and 344 days. The obvious question on everyone’s minds is how he managed to live that long.
It’s a question asked of every person who reaches the age of 90 and above and the answers are as varied as the number of people who are asked that question. But for Chitetsu Watanabe, his simple secret to a long life is “not to get angry and keep a smile on your face.”
And the father-of-five was definitely following his own advice as he was smiling as he was given a certificate by Guinness World Records. He currently lives in a care home in Niigata, located in northern Japan, where he was born in 1907.
The former sugar cane plantation worker still professes to have a sweet tooth despite not having any teeth left. He loves cream puffs and custard pudding owing to the fact that these don’t require chewing.
Masazo Nonaka used to be the oldest living man until he died last year at the age of 113. The oldest living person in the world is a Japanese woman named Kane Tanaka at 117 years.
Watanabe’s daughter-in-law by his eldest son Tetsuo said: “I’ve never seen him raise his voice or get mad. He’s also caring.
“I think having lived with a big family under one roof, mingling with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren helped keep a smile on his face as well.”
Watanabe used to grow and exhibit bonsai trees and even had a collection of roughly 100 of them but had to give that up around a decade ago.
Once he graduated from agricultural school, he moved to Taiwan where he worked on sugar cane plantations. He stayed there for 18 years with his wife Mitsue and their five children.
Towards the end of World War II, he entered military service then went back to Niigata after the war and worked in a government office until his retirement.
He also had a family farm where he grew fruit and vegetables.
He and his son Tetsuo constructed a new family home in 1974 within a hectare of farmland where they grew tomatoes, potatoes, plums, and strawberries.
He continued working on the farm until he was 104.
Jiroemon Kimura, also a Japanese, is on record as the oldest man ever. He was born in April 1897 and passed away in June 2013 at the age of 116 years and 54 days.
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