The Amazon People with the World's Healthiest Hearts

Dense Amazon jungle
Dense Amazon jungle | © blackend464 / Pixabay
Will Lees

While many countries try complicated measures to cope with the wave of heart-related deaths, an Amazonian tribe has unknowingly showed the world how to get it right.

Heart disease claims more lives per year than any other illness, and doctors and scientists constantly work to create advanced procedures and pills to compensate for an unhealthy lifestyle. Stents, bypass procedures, and blood thinning medications – these are just some of the risky remedies people seek to keep their hearts from calling it quits. Scientists, however, are now peeling their eyes away from the microscope to instead look more closely at a Bolivian tribe who have been labelled with “the healthiest hearts in the world.”

Bolivian Amazon fishing boats

A group of indigenous people in the Bolivian Amazon, known as the Tsimane, have their ancient diet and active lifestyle to thank for their incredible heart health. A new study spearheaded by the National Institutes of Health and National Institute of Aging have discovered that the indigenous group has the lowest level of coronary artery disease ever recorded. The findings showed that the accumulation of coronary artery calcium (CAC), which causes the hardening of arterial walls, was five times less in the Tsimane people than it was in the control group containing 6,814 participants.

Tsimane people fishing
Amazon shelter

Hunting and foraging for their food, the indigenous tribe spend roughly 90% of the daylight hours engaged in physical activity, covering an average of 6 – 8 miles (10 – 12 km) on foot, each day. Their diet is also free of processed foods and is very low in saturated fat, as they mainly feed on fish, lean animal meat, corn, nuts, fruits and fiber-dense carbohydrates (such as beans and whole grains). The Tsimane tribe also enjoy a lifestyle free of refined sugars and cigarettes, which greatly aids in preventing the arteries within the heart from hardening.

The Maniqui River is home to the Tsimane

The Tsimane people primarily live in remote villages alongside the Maniqui River and number around 10,000 people. While exactly replicating the hunter-gatherer lifestyle of the Tsimane tribe may not be realistic, the takeaways are simple and applicable. A healthy natural diet and a consistently active lifestyle are the most vital ingredients to a healthy heart.

landscape with balloons floating in the air


Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.

Winter Sale Offers on Our Trips

Incredible Savings

Edit article