A 114-year-old Japanese woman, daughter of a kimono maker, was today officially recognised as the world’s oldest female by Guinness World Records.

“Have I lived so long? It’s strange,” Okawa said shyly after receiving the notification.

Misao Okawa from western Japanese city of Osaka was born on March 5, 1898 and will mark her 115th birthday next week.

She received a certificate from Guinness at a nursery home where she resides and said, “I’m glad.”

The super-centenarian married in 1919 and had three children, two of whom — a son and a daughter — are still alive and in their 90s, Kyodo News agency reported.

Okawa said she was “very happy” to receive the recognition and a certificate from Guinness World Records.

Interestingly, Okawa has never suffered any major health problems and says the secret of longevity is to have good meals.

The world’s oldest living person is a 115-year-old Japanese man in Kyoto, Jiroemon Kimura, who was born on April 19, 1897, making Japan home to both the longest living man and woman in the world.

The world’s previous oldest woman, 115 year old Koto Okubo, also Japanese, passed away in mid-January, less than a month after inheriting the title.

A super-centenarian is someone who has reached the age of 110 years. This age is achieved by about one in a thousand centenarians.

There are estimated to be 300-450 living super-centenarians in the world, though only about 70 individual verified living super-centenarians are known.

(This article was published on February 27, 2013)
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