How we age is about 30% genetics. The rest is in our hands. Here are 10 Tips for Longevity.
Start now to reverse the main things that cause aging–
- Laugh. Laughter lowers levels of stress hormones, and boosts activity of the body’s natural defensive antibodies. Studies show that people with a sense of humor have a 31% longer survival rate.
- Sleep enough but not too much. Both too much and too little sleep can have a negative impact on longevity. Six-to-8 hours is optimal. People who get more than 8 hours or less than 4 have a significantly higher death rate. See: Smart Snoozers
- Cancer-proof your diet. The American Institute for Cancer Research findings show that about 40% of cancers are diet related. See: Live Long Eat Super Foods
- Exercise. Fit women have a 40% less chance of developing heart disease. The Cooper Institute of Aerobic Research’s studies show that people in the lower 20% of fitness were 3 times more likely to die prematurely than the fittest group.
- Floss. People with gum disease have an increased risk of heart disease and a higher mortality rate.
- Take vitamins. Even the best diet needs some supplements. Dr. Michael Roizen, co-author of YOU: Staying Young, says the minimum should include a multi-vitamin, 600 milligrams of DHA/omega 3, 1000 IU Vitamin D, 600 Milligrams Calcium, and 200 milligrams magnesium. (NOTE: Look for whole food vitamins, not synthetic. It should say ‘whole food based’ right on the label.)
- Work toward your ideal weight. Overeating is one of the main causes of aging and increases the risk of heart disease and cancer. Every 10% increase in weight raises blood pressure, one of the major factors affecting aging. Studies show that reducing daily caloric intake by 10-to-20% is linked to longevity.
- Get regular check-ups. Have a PAP smear. Examine your breasts. Nine-out-of-ten breast lumps are benign, and most are found by women who regularly examine themselves. Most breast cancers are curable if they’re caught early enough.
- Eat dark chocolate. It contains phenols, chemicals thought to protect against heart disease and cancer. Studies show that people who eat a moderate amount of chocolate live longer than those who never touch sweets.
- Drink tea. Both green and black teas contain powerful antioxidants. A Harvard study found that one cup a day cuts heart attack risk dramatically. Other tests have found that drinking tea boosts the survival rate following a heart attack by 28%.
There are also emotional and mental components to longevity. We are what we think and how we handle what life dishes out.