Ask centenarian Louisa Cumberbatch-Hunte what is her secret to long life and she will instantly provide you with the recipe that has worked for her.
A daily consumption of Welch’s grape juice, cod liver oil and Sanatogen powder have sustained the 104-year-old over the years. She will quickly point out that she does not suffer from arthritis, high blood cholesterol or diabetes which means she can still eat sweet bread and pone.
Partially impaired eyesight is the only major illness that Cumberbatch-Hunte suffers from and that does not hinder her from attending church regularly and a few community events, including last weekend’s Barbados Charity Ball where Prime Minister Freundel Stuart presented her with a bouquet of flowers and posed for photos.
“Even at this advanced age, she is still very alert,” said her grand-daughter, Sharon Cumberbatch. “She sticks to a strict dietary regime.”
Born in Bel Air, St. Philip in 1907, the mother of four worked as a seamstress in Barbados before migrating to Canada in 1974 to join one of her sons. Three sons predeceased her and the remaining child – Marjorie Hardy – lives in New York. She is also a grandmother of 25, great grandmother of 30 and great, great grandmother of six.
Cumberbatch-Hunte, who celebrates her next birthday on September 21, has been a Seventh-day Adventist member for close to six decades.
“She’s very religious and committed to family,” added Cumberbatch. “Those things have also kept her going for such a long time.”
She spent winters in Barbados and visited the Caribbean island regularly until six years ago when failing eyesight restricted her movement.
Cumberbatch-Hunte’s younger sister – Lillian – passed away last year in Barbados at age 102 while their mother died at age 93.
BY RON FANFAIR