FitSugarSource: 10 Daily Habits to Start Now For a Long Life
There's no guarantee to living a long life, but if you want to hedge your bets, there are some things you can start doing right now that can help. Read on for 10 things you can start doing today, and let us know how many you already do in the comments!
- Swap Soda For Water: It's not just the sugar in soda you have to worry about: recent studies have found that diet soda can be just as deadly as regular soda and can lead to heart attack and stroke. To help lower your risk of heart disease and stroke, cut back on your daily soda intake.
- Do Some Exercise: Sweating it out at the gym isn't just about melting away body fat. Exercise is a great way to help prevent diseases and keep you feeling your best: in fact, studies have shown that it only takes 15 minutes a day of exercise to add years to your life, so try these 15-minute exercise ideas!
- Have a Square of Chocolate: Daily dark chocolate is a habit you should keep - besides relieving stress, eating dark chocolate can help keep your heart healthy. Eat only a small square a day so you don't go overboard on the sugar.
- Drink Green Tea: Aging better isn't just about living to the triple digits. Staying functional as you grow older can help you continue to celebrate birthdays, and one of the best ways to protect against functional disabilities, says a recent study, is by drinking about 16 ounces of green tea a day.
- Skip Dessert: Too much sugar in your diet can lead to heart disease, so take steps to cut back on refined sugars as much as possible. Try not to eat more than 100 calories (or six teaspoons) a day of sugar. If you've got an insatiable sweet tooth, read our recommendations for reducing sugar cravings here.
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- Eat More Greens: Want to know the secret to the longevity of the Japanese? It may just be in the diet. Research has shown that societies that eat plant-based diets and lean proteins live longer. And a recent study even linked the amount of red meat in your diet to your actual risk of death. Try limiting your red meat intake to two or three servings a week and increase the veggies in your diet. Here are some weeknight meatless recipes to get you started.
- Get Better Sleep: Feeling fatigued all the time? Getting more sleep can help you be more productive now and can help you live a long life later. A recent study found that women who slept for between five and six and a half hours a night survived longer than those who slept for more than eight or fewer than five. If your sleep patterns fall in these categories, it could be because you're not getting enough quality sleep. Read our tips for getting the best sleep here.
- Get Up and Move: The societies that live the longest don't just work out - their whole lifestyles keep them moving. Studies have shown that sitting for hours a day can be deadly, so make sure you're constantly taking breaks to stretch, walk around, and move your body throughout the day.
- Have a Glass of Red Wine: Relaxing with a glass of red wine can be a mood booster, which can help you live to a ripe old age. But besides helping you to de-stress, drinking a glass of red wine a day has been shown to decrease your risk of having a stroke or heart attack - just remember to stick to the one-a-day rule, since having multiple glasses can be detrimental to your health.
- Everything in Moderation: It's a healthy-living mantra because it works: you don't have to eliminate every indulgence from your diet, but having limits can help you live a long life. Nix overeating with these portion control products and find out exactly what serving sizes should look like here.
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