Kids have a habit of making us think about things that perhaps we rather wouldn’t, such as how long we will live for, for instance. Children are naturally inquisitive, and so, ask all manner of questions, like ‘Mommy, when will you die?’. When your children ask you questions like this, it’s always hard to know how to answer, because if you’re being honest, you have no idea - anything could happen at any time. That being said, we all know that by being conscious of the lifestyle choices we make, we can increase our life expectancy and live to an older age. But the question is, is that all it takes?
When it comes to leading a long and healthy life, as well as a happy one, the answer is knowing the best ways to keep yourself healthy, not just guessing - taking note of what science actually tells us.The science behind longevity is constantly changing and being updated, and while we don’t know everything just yet, there is a lot of evidence that points towards doing certain things to up your life expectancy. Want to know what these things are? Yes, then read on - all is about to be revealed.
Taking care of your body
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We all know that eating well is important when it comes to leading a long and healthy life, but the question is, is eating well enough, or as many scientists have suggested, is a certain diet required for a long and healthy life? The answer is yes and no. You see, eating healthily, no matter what you’re eating will impact your health and boost how healthy your body is. However, studies have shown that the people who tend to live the longest are the people who live in the Mediterranean and eat a Mediterranean diet, which is high in fruit and vegetables, olive oil, nuts and seeds, and healthy fats, such as avocado. Scientists have suggested that the reason people who follow this diet tend to live so long is because their diet is linked to a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, and even memory loss and dementia. So, eating healthily is a must, but you need to be choosy about the type of diet you opt to follow.
Looking after your mind
When it comes to leading a long and healthy life, there’s a common misconception that your physical health is more important than your mental health. However, scientists have proven that that is not the case and that mental health is just as important as physical health when it comes to the longevity of your life. You see, studies have shown that your personality - something that’s directly impacted by your mental health - impacts your life expectancy. That’s why, when it comes to mental health problems seeking help as soon as possible is important, as you don’t want a mental health problem to impact your life expectancy, do you?
Knowing what you’re at risk of
Obviously, when it comes to your general health and life expectancy, your genetics play a part in what you are prone to as many health conditions or problems are hereditary and are passed down from family member to family member. If you’re unsure of what health conditions run in your family, you can’t take steps to prevent yourself from developing them or know what signs to look out for. That’s why it’s so important to find out about the health of your ancestors, from your parents to your great, great grandparents. One of the best ways to find out what health problems you’re at risk of is to get an ancestry DNA test done, like the ones shown on the My Family DNA Test website. You’d be amazed at what your DNA can say about your health, so if you’re worried about health issues you could be prone to, then having an ancestry DNA test done could give you the knowledge (and peace of mind) that you need.
Have you ever watched one of those documentaries where they talk to the world’s oldest person (or one of the world’s oldest people)? Well, if you have, then the chances are you will know that the majority of people who live past 100 practice meditation-based exercise on a daily basis. So, if you’re hoping to live to a ripe old age and be supple and healthy at 100, you need to start practicing some form of meditation-based exercise, like Tai Chi, Pilates or Yoga. Once you start meditation-based exercise and feel the benefit of it, you won’t ever want to stop.
Research has shown that people who have a large group of peers tend to lead longer lives. Being sociable may not seem like it links to your health, but the fact scientists have found that the more sociable we are, the longer we tend to live, can’t just be a coincidence - there has to be more to it than that. An important part of being sociable is being able to turn to friends and family in times of stress and worry, which helps to take some of the pressure off of us, making us less prone to problems caused by stress like heart attacks and stroke caused by stress-induced high blood pressure. So, if you don’t already take some time out from hectic family life once or twice a week for a coffee with the girls or dinner with your sister, make sure to start doing so - having adult time is important for your health.
The more active you are, the better
It’s not secret that exercise keeps is young, but just how important is being active when it comes to your long-term health? Well, seeing as studies have shown that spending most of your time sitting down can be bad for your health and can contribute to a shorter lifespan, I’m guessing being active is very important. Ideally, you want to get at least 150-minutes of exercise a week or more - whether it’s walking, swimming, going to the gym, or cycling it doesn’t matter, all that matters is that you’re working your body and keeping it healthy and in shape.
There you have it, a guide to the secrets of long life so that the next time your child asks you if you’ll live to 100 you can say yes!
This post was written by a contributing writer.