The Roseto Effect

Saturday, January 7, 2017


I was doing some little research for my boss this week on The Roseto Effect and I personally find it super interesting as well!

So basically, The Roseto effect is named after the town Roseto, Pennsylvania. A doctor, Dr. Steve Wolf went there and realize that the rate of heart diseases of that town was 50% lower and he decided to find out why.

So they collected the data they needed and begun their research. At first, they thought it was their diet that makes the difference but as they dug deeper, they found out that these Rosetans have a very unhealthy lifestyle! Totally the opposite of what we usually read health experts. They smoke, drink a little too much wine and they eat a lot of fats! They break every rule in the rule book but still live longer than others.

Dr. Steve Wolf even compared Roseto data with other neighboring township with the idea that it may be the natural resources such as water and soil that make this significant reduce of heart diseases. But the result turned out negative.

Amazing isn’t?

What they finally concluded was this, the Rosetans are nurtured by themselves. In other words, the people are nurtured by people. 

The Rosetans have a culture and environment that is no longer common nowadays. They are very close as a community. Meals are shared, people are helping each other and they know each other as well. Not only that, each household lived 3 generations! The older generation is not regarded as irrelevant but was appreciated for their wisdom and age.

It was said that because of the close relationship and community that they have, it leaves no room for individual to be overwhelmed by everyday problem by themselves. Instead, the support of a group of people reduces that stress which is often the number one cause of heart diseases.

One thing I like the most about The Rosetans is this, they do not flash wealth! And I thought this was amazing! They do not know who is wealthier than the other because everyone’s houses and cars are about the same. There isn’t any pressure or stress because of comparison. I can’t help but wondered if social media had led us to compare with others when everyone is flashing what they have on the internet. 

Back to The Roseto effect, when they were conducting this research back in the late 1960s, they predicted that this phenomenon will not last any longer because the younger generation is not contented with the tradition uphold. Soon enough, people started building bigger houses and fencing it up, have big cars and the pursuit of wealth took over. The bond between the Rosetans started to break and lo and behold, their rate of heart diseases soar up.

WOW! Isn’t amazing to see such a direct relationship between our physical health with our mental health that is highly depended on our relationships and community. 

I always call myself a loner because I really enjoy being alone. But looking at this, makes me think twice whether it is necessary for me to make an effort to make a difference in my social life. I think, not only I should be more friendly and open up my comfort zone, I also need to be super selective of the people I hang out with. If I hang out with people that keep comparing me with others than it wouldn’t be helpful kan? 

I found a quote by Edward Gibbon, which I really really love!

”In the end, more than they wanted freedom, they wanted security. They wanted a comfortable life; and, in their quest for it all, security, comfort, freedom, they lost it all. When what the Athenians wanted finally was not to give to society but for society to give to them; when the freedom they wished for most was the freedom from responsibility, then Athenians ceased to be free." 

I really love what I’m doing now! To read on stuff like this and also doing it with people who are of the right influence! 


First week of 2017 had been overwhelmingly gracious to me! :)

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