"It does certainly raise the question if there's something about spiritual life that also has an impact on longer life," says Dr Gary Fraser, who is researching the community............
It seems that regular churchgoers have significantly lower levels of stress hormones and so may be better equipped to cope with the challenges in life, say scientists.
"Religion and connection to something higher than oneself, connection to the sacred, connection to a tight-knit religious community allows you to modulate your reactions and your emotions to believe there is a broader purpose," says Dr Kerry Morton, who is involved in a longer-term study on Adventist health.
"Therefore your body can stay in balance and not be destroyed by those stressors and traumas over time."
What do you think it is which causes church goers to live longer? We celebrate only birthdays of 90 years or more at the 250-strong Bible study I'm involved with; there's a birthday about 3 times a year! And they don't just turn 90 and die, either, they continue going to Bible study. One of our substitute leaders (a very good friend of mine, healthy and sharp as a tack) is 93 and lives on her own since her 98 year old husband of 70 years died 3 months ago! She leans heavily on her faith and always has.
From Proverbs 3: 1,2 "My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity."