On the tail of this year's International Women's Day, celebrated March 8, US News Health spotlighted the world's ten oldest people, nine of whom happen to be women. Notable among them is Leila Denmark, a former pediatrician who cared for youngsters who could have been her great-great-great-great-grandchildren. More about Ms. Denmark and some of the wisdom she's acquired appear in the article:
Until she retired in May 2001, Leila Alice Denmark (born Leila Daughtry) was the oldest-practicing pediatrician in the world, working at the Henrietta Eggleston Hospital on Atlanta's Emory University campus until she was 103 years old. Denmark's medical career is impressive: She was the third woman to graduate with a doctor of medicine degree from the Medical College of Georgia, and she codeveloped the pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine. Denmark has a lot of advice for aspiring supercentenarians. For example, she strongly objects to junk food and sweets (she has refused birthday cake several times because of the sugar content) and recommends drinking only water. Denmark also says a sense of humor is key to a long life, and she should know: She celebrated her 114th birthday in February.
Photo by Will Clayton.