The pollution, stress, artificial food and static lives many experience in the West have mentionable and severe effects on one’s health. Hence, cold climate and high costs are not the only factors which come into play for those seeking to retire abroad. In fact, according to International Living, a leading authority on expat living, a healthy lifestyle is increasingly becoming one of the most important considerations of retirees looking to retire abroad.
In the West, there is a tendency for healthy food to be substantially more expensive than unhealthy food. Hence, one’s incentive to eat healthy is hampered by economic restrictions and people are led into an unhealthy diet. In Ecuador, the case is quite different. Across the country, from the smallest pueblo to the largest city, markets with fresh produce exist in abundance. Even if you live in big cities like Quito or Guayaquil, fresh vegetables, fruits and meats are daily supplied to big and small markets across the cities. To make it all better, fresh, organic and healthy food is not only easily available, it is also notably cheap. When a pineapple or a few hundred grams of strawberries are no more than a dollar, there’s nothing in the way of a healthy snack.
But nutrition is not the only thing that will help steer your life onto the healthy path. Many Ecuadorian towns and cities are best experienced on foot and can easily be manoeuvred through as a pedestrian. Instead of taking the car everywhere, going for a stroll becomes a regular and healthy habit. Moreover, it cannot be overlooked that Ecuador is a natural paradise. Even if you live in the more sizable cities of Guayaquil, Quito or Cuenca, you are never more than 30-40 minutes from mountain to climb or a beach to roam. From the mystical cloud forest and deep jungle to pristine beaches and mountains draped in clouds; Ecuador craves for physical activity. In other words, new expats are easily able to leave their sedentary lives behind.
But Ecuador does not only promise improvements of the purely physical sort. Life in Ecuador is lived differently than what people in the West might be used to. Shoulders are held lower, spirits are higher and the moments are seized. If you go to a certain type of restaurant, it is not unlikely that half the restaurant might burst out dancing if the right song comes on. During the weekend, people of all demographics flock into the nearest park. Children, teenagers, parents and the elderly all seek to enjoy the tranquil rays of the sun in the company of neighbours, friends and family. And if you find yourself in a smaller town or a quiet neighbourhood in a city, you will see people sitting outside their houses or shops just watching life go by, simply enjoying the moment.
As a result, for brooding retirees and expats, Ecuador is likely to prove to be a haven for both body and mind.