An Egg to Add Seven Years

Eggs have often been the center of debates on whether they are good or bad for you, but eating one can also add seven years to your life. At least that’s the idea when you eat an egg boiled in the sulfurous waters of Hakone, Japan.

Located approximately an hour and a half from Tokyo by train, Hakone is a popular weekend getaway for Tokyo residents and for those seeking to experience the natural hot springs, also known as onsen, which are found throughout the volcanic region.

On clear days, the area provides breathtaking views of Mt. Fuji and contains seven different forms of transportation including a cable car, boat, and ropeway.

The life-extending eggs are found a short walk from the top of the Hakone Ropeway in an area called Owakudani.

The eggs are placed in large metal cages, each holding about twenty eggs, and lowered into large pools of water which bubble with heat from the volcano below.

The pools are naturally occurring, but they have been outfitted to hold the cages.

When the eggs are cooked and the shells are black from sulfur, they are pulled from the water and removed from the cages.

Five eggs are placed into a small paper bag and sold within minutes only a few feet from the pools where they were boiled. They are also sold lower down the mountain at gift stores, but they are best enjoyed when still warm.

The black shells flake off, leaving behind a warm creamy egg that surprisingly doesn’t need salt.

Although each egg is said to add an additional seven years to your life, the directions on the bag of eggs as well as the stand where they are sold recommend that you eat no more than two.

For more information on Hakone and Owakudani, please visit the following links:

Japan Guide: Owakudani

Japan Guide: Hakone

Nadine Nettmann

Nadine has a taste for travel, adventure, delicious food and a great glass of wine. A foodie from a young age, she loves trying meals from around the world and does her best to travel and dine on a budget. Originally from Los Angeles, Nadine and her husband stored 95% of their belongings and moved to Maui with two suitcases in 2006. She is an avid cook and while she loves living on the island, she will admit she misses some of her kitchen appliances in storage. When she’s not baking a cake or out on the water, she can be found at her computer working on her novel.

  1. Very interesting! Have you tried the Chinese version of it called the Thousand Year Old Egg or Century egg? They are typically duck eggs that are soaked in clay and other minerals. The albumin turns a clear black color and the yolk turns dark grey. It’s good eaten with rice or as a side-dish. Here’s more information:

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