JOHNSON CITY, TN—It’s been well documented that Baptists live longer than nonbelievers and even members of other faith traditions. A landmark study released Wednesday claims to have discovered the reason for their increased longevity: the casserole.
In the 1980s, researchers at East Tennessee State University set out to observe the life expectancy of members of each major faith tradition—as well as that of the nation’s nonreligious community—with the ambitious Project to Observe Total Lifespans of the Unchurched and Churched (POTLUC), which surveyed roughly 50,000 people over three decades. When researchers took notice within the first few years that the Baptists were living significantly longer than anyone else being studied, they dedicated workers and funds toward figuring out why.
After careful analysis, the main lifestyle factor setting the Baptists apart from all others became clear: Baptist churchgoers eat a tremendous amount of casserole. Significantly more than any other people group in the nation.
“It makes sense if you think about it—this is a dish that can provide all five food groups in one bite,” says nutritional psychologist John Marzetti. “It’s a superfood, really.”
Authors of the POTLUC study are reportedly in talks with pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca to develop a pill which mimics the casserole’s positive health impact, and, according to rumors, the FDA plans to conduct phase one trials of QASSERYL™ later this year.
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