by Susan Jacobs
A study conducted by Boston University shows that the fastest growing area of the American population is the centenarian community (i.e., those who are 100 years of age or older). The second largest growing area is people who are 85 years or older. In other words, you have a great chance to live a very long time in this modern society.
Even more interesting is the sheer magnitude of older citizens. There are approximately 40,000 centenarians living in the United States. Incidentally, 85% of them are women.
How does one make it to the ripe old age of 100? Each centenarian who is asked that question has a different answer. Some say they had a glass of brandy every night, others say they never drank a drop in their life. Some swear by the bacon they eat for breakfast, others are strict vegetarians.
No, there isn’t a magic formula for living forever (though avoiding bull riding and base jumping certainly helps). However, there are proven methods to greatly increase our chances of longevity. Below, I have compiled 15 simple tips to help you make it to 100 years of age:
1. Drink no less than 8 glasses of water a day, though you should preferably have even more than that.
2. Take a multivitamin that is appropriate to your age and gender.
3. Don’t smoke. If you do smoke, it’s never too late to quit and increase your odds of living a long time.
4. Avoid drinking alcohol to excess.
5. If you have no regular exercise regiment, start one. If you hate to exercise, take up a fun activity like swimming.
6. Settle down in a low-crime neighborhood, perhaps in the countryside.
7. Avoid processed foods as much as possible.
8. Eat a balanced diet that is high in fiber.
9. Change careers if you have a very stressful job.
10. If you are a thrill seeker, live vicariously through books or films, rather than participating in dangerous activities.
11. Always practice safe sex.
12. Wear your seatbelt and drive defensively.
13. Surround yourself with only supportive friends and family.
14. Make time for the hobbies you love the most, particularly if they reduce your stress level.
15. Don’t short-change yourself in the sleep department, as sleep deprivation can lead to a host of problems.
Will the tips above guarantee a long life? Barring an unfortunate accident, they can certainly help. No one can predict how one’s body will age. However, being healthy in body, mind and spirit will not only increase a person’s chances of living a long time, it will make the life they do have a very good one.
about the author:
Susan Jacobs is a part-time teacher, as well as a regular contributor for NOEDb, a site for learning about and selecting an online nursing degree program. Susan invites your comments and freelancing job inquiries at her email address firstname.lastname@example.org .