Tuesday 23 January 2018

The Irish family named the oldest in the world have revealed the secret to their long lives

Sarah Young

With a combined age of 1,075 years, the Donnelly family have revealed the secret behind their longevity.

Inducted into the Guinness book of world records, the 13 siblings from County Armagh grew up on a farm with a diet that consisted of locally sourced ingredients including free-range pigs and chickens for bacon and eggs, as well as vegetables grown in their own garden.

However, the family have revealed that the one food that has really fuelled their record breaking long lives is porridge, and not just for breakfast.

“We've always followed Daddy's habit of that nice warm bite before sleep,” said Joe Donnelly, the 72-year-old youngster of the clan.

From left to right: Kathleen (74), Seamus (79), Terry (80), Rose (84), Tony (82), Sean (92), Mairead (85), Leo (70), Eileen (89), Maureen (91), Peter (86) with Paul Muldoon who narrated the first documentary
From left to right: Kathleen (74), Seamus (79), Terry (80), Rose (84), Tony (82), Sean (92), Mairead (85), Leo (70), Eileen (89), Maureen (91), Peter (86) with Paul Muldoon who narrated the first documentary

“Porridge at around 10pm, then again for breakfast at 7am. Cooked oats, milk, a spot of apple jam on top.”

Now, the family’s claims that oats have had such a beneficial effect have prompted scientists at the International Longevity Centre (ILC) to launch a study into their diet.

Of course, tucking into a bowl of porridge twice a day is just part of their wholesome diet, which also sees them enjoy a wealth of fruits, vegetables and meats produced on their 100-acre farm.

An archive image of the Donnelly family pictured outside their Collegelands home. True North: The Worlds Oldest Family will be shown on BBC One Northern Ireland on Monday 31 October at 10.45pm
An archive image of the Donnelly family pictured outside their Collegelands home. True North: The Worlds Oldest Family will be shown on BBC One Northern Ireland on Monday 31 October at 10.45pm

Independent News Service

Promoted Links

Life Newsletter

Our digest of the week's juiciest lifestyle titbits.

Promoted Links

Editors Choice

Also in Life