Mature CoupleOkay, so there are no guarantees. But there's plenty of scientific evidence to show we can boost our chances of living a longer, healthier life by following these lifestyle tips:
Eat Right. According to a study published in the "International Journal of Epidemiology," eating a diet high in a variety of vegetables and low-fat protein leads to a longer life and one with less cardiovascular disease and cancer. On the other hand, lots of red meat, refined carbohydrates, sugars, and foods rich in saturated fats was associated with increased mortality rates from those diseases.
Eat Less. Research published in the Rejuvenation Research reports the less eating you do as you age could add years to your life. According to the study, if we eat 15 percent less than we did from age 25 we couldadd 4.5 years to our life.
Exercise. Of course, we hear this constantly. Now a study published in the "Archives of Internal Medicine" reports that regular exercise slows the aging process. For example, the study indicated that regular running reduces the risk of heart disease, cancer, and neurological conditions like Alzheimer's disease.
Give Up Smoking. It's not too late. If you're having a tough time doing it, speak with your doctor about smoking cessation medication.
Don't Oversleep. There's been plenty of attention given to the lack of sleep, but a study published in the "Archives of General Psychiatry" found that people who sleep more than eight hours nightly had a significantly higher death rate. It's also true sleeping less than four hours each night increases your chance of premature death.
Cultivate Friendships.Several studies have noted the health and happiness benefits of a social life, which include an increased feeling of self worth. Plus, friends are helpful in difficult times, reduce feelings of depression and anxiety, and may also encourage us to look after our own health.
Give The Boot To A Bad Attitude. A 2002 study published in the "Mayo Clinic Proceedings" reported people who expect misfortune and only see the negative side of life don't live as long as those who hold a more optimistic view. Other rewards for an upbeat attitude? Fewer problems with work or other daily activities because of physical or emotional health, less pain, increased energy, and a generally happier, more peaceful state of mind. If you're not a naturally positive person, you can still inch towards a better attitude by trying to see bad events as temporary. Tell yourself: nothing lasts forever.
LOL. A study published in the "American College of Cardiology Journal" reports laughing increases blood flow by more than twenty percent. This has a similar beneficial effect to that of an aerobic workout. Further research suggests that the level of natural killer cells which attack virus and tumor cells, are increased through laughter. These cells are suppressed if the body suffers consistent long-term stress. Even if you force a laugh, it works. Turns out our bodies can't distinguish between real and fake laughter.
Calm Anger. A study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, found that those who were classified as having the highest level of anger in response to stress were more likely to develop heart disease prematurely in comparison to those who reported lower anger responses.
Get A Pet. Numerous studies show that owning a pet can help you live longer and feel healthier. The benefits range from reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, better physical and psychological wellbeing, reduced stress levels, and lower blood pressure levels.