Polynesian Secrets to Longevity: William Spitzenberg (Transcript)

William Spitzenberg at TEDxPagoPago

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Ten years ago, I was diagnosed with hypertension and pre-diabetes. I was that morbidly obese Polynesian guy who enjoyed leisure time watching TV, eating burgers and fries for lunch, and deep-fried chicken with a heaping plate of white rice for dinner.

Now the fried chicken didn’t taste that good until you first rounded in a well-mixed bowl of mayo and ketchup. I used to think greens served at the buffet were for decorations.

Well, today I stand before you as a healthy no longer obese, slimmer stronger Polynesian guy with blood pressure — thank you — and blood sugar levels most would dream of having.

2018 study conducted by the American Samoa Department of Health showed that 93% of American Samoans are obese or overweight and over 50% live with diabetes or the onset of diabetes.

Non-communicable diseases account for over 70% of death here in American Samoa. There is no sugarcoating this: the obesity crisis among Polynesians are of epic proportions.

To find the true solution to this crisis, we must look to our ancestors for answers.

I am here today to share with you the Polynesian secrets of longevity, the cure for obesity that I’ve discovered studying our Polynesian ancestors. Following these secrets helped me lose over a hundred pounds of fat and helped me keep it off for over ten years.

Our Polynesian ancestors never suffered from obesity, diabetes, or any of the many ailments we now suffer from. When early explorers came to the Pacific Islands, they were in awe of not only the beauty of the islands but also the vibrantly healthy people that lived here.

Early explorer Charles Clarke said this:

“They were the most beautiful race of people I ever beheld. I did not observe a single remarkably thin or disagreeably obese but they were all in fine order and exquisitely proportioned.”

The German physician Dr. Ernst Dieffenbach said:

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“The men are tall, muscular and have well-proportioned frame, very rarely inclining to obesity. Their teeth are white, even, regular and last to old age.”

The things our ancestors did on a daily basis helped them stay slim and strong all year round for life, without ever worrying about going on a diet. Following their way is the secret to longevity and the cure to the obesity crisis that we’ve been searching for.

Our Polynesian ancestors used these, every single day to stay slim and strong for life. These five secrets will also help you reverse obesity for good.

So are you ready to learn these five secrets our ancestors used to be slim and strong for life? All right, let’s get started.


Our ancestors spent time every evening singing praises and offering Thanksgiving to their God during family [final otu]. Anyone coming late or skipping out on these family rituals would be severely punished. I know I’ve had my fair share of punishment going up.

Monks and lasting civilizations have known the power of meditation for centuries. Science is just now catching up. Meditation is the fastest way to change your mind from its self-defeating beliefs that are keeping you stuck to new beliefs that will take you to where you truly want to go.

To change your body, you must first change your mind.

James Allen wrote in his classic leadership book called As a Man Thinketh:

“The body is the servant of the mind. At the command of glad and beautiful thoughts, it becomes clothed with youthfulness and beauty. Change of diet will not change or help a man who will not change his thoughts. When a man makes his thoughts pure, he no longer desires impure foods.”

Earl Nightingale said:

“We are all self-made but only the successful will admit it.”

The most powerful way to change your mind is to spend time every single day in prayer and meditation. This will literally reprogram your mind for success guaranteed.

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Have you been looking for a shortcut to weight loss success? This is it. Recreating your mind through daily meditation and prayer is a shortcut you’ve been looking for, for that slimmer stronger body.

Pray and meditate every single day for longevity, just like our ancestors.


The Samoan legend of Vaea and Apaula portrays the magical power of sleep. When Apaula approached Vaea’s brother Va’atausili for help, she was disappointed to find him as his crony figure merrily chasing butterflies on the beach. Va’atausili told Va’atausili not to worry but to wait a while, while he goes to sleep in the cave.

Va’atausili went to sleep a tiny little boy and came out of the cave a towering handsome giant.

Yes, you can actually get that slim strong body you want by sleeping. Our Polynesian ancestors went to bed shortly after dusk and they woke up before dawn every single day. That is why they were healthy, slim and strong.

Getting eight hours of undisturbed sleep every single night is the only way you can recharge your body.

Along with so many other life-prolonging benefits, getting enough sleep increases your body’s ability to repair itself and build you that lean body you’ve always wanted.

Someone once said the future is shaped by your dreams, so stop wasting time and go to sleep. Get enough sleep every single day for longevity, just like our ancestors.


Drinking enough water helps your body cleanse itself and provide needed fluids for proper organ functions. Without enough water, your body will have a hard time burning off body fat and processing toxins out of the body.

Our ancestors drank pristine water from mountain front springs and Niu fresh from the coconut tree.

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Thank you to Sina and her Eel, we now enjoy this delicious Fountain of Youth just by drinking it. No wonder our ancestors referred to the Niu as The Tree of Life. I call the Niu the Polynesian sprite.

Water is life. Without it, illness and death will swiftly follow. Drink enough water and Niu every single day for longevity just like our ancestor.

I must caution you, though, stick to only water if your immune system is compromised.


The truth is we all love food. Unfortunately, the types of food we love to eat are the very foods that are causing obesity and the many diseases that we now suffer from. High fat meats and highly processed foods loaded with the addictive ingredients like sugar, oil, dairy, and alcohol are easily available at convenience stores located only a few yards away from homes in every village.

Cheaply priced processed foods now line the front aisle of every store that a kid with a dollar can have a field day with.

Climbing a tree for some fresh guava or some delicious cancer-fighting mangoes is no longer appealing to the obese child who’d rather walk a few yards to the convenience store to get his sugar fix overdose from candies and junk food before heading to school each morning.

Grabbing a soda and a bag of his favorite chips on the way to home from school is now the norm.

Times are different when I was a child. Back then, the sight of a single lollipop would make a kid act like it was Christmas all over again. Whoever was lucky enough to afford one had to share licking it with his friends until all the hard candy was gone.

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