Longevity For Dummies

Berlin Family vacationWhen I gave birth to my three children after the age of forty, extending my lifespan became my obsession. You know what they say, when you have your health you have everything. Put your own oxygen mask on first before assisting othersor something like that Anyway, since a fair share of my immediate family met with an early demise, I was determined to not succumb to the same fate. I wanted to learn the secrets of a long life.

Its been proven that behavior affects longevity by as much as 75%. Longevity For Dummies; the ultimate guide to living to 100, is based on the lifestyles of Blue Zone centenarians, (groups of people in certain parts of the world who live to be 100.)

1. No self-respecting longevity guide would be complete without advise on healthy eating. While there is no single diet to ensure wellness and longevity, centenarians of the world eat a plant-based diet of whole, fresh foods. So, if you aspire to reach 100, youre going to have to eat meat less often. (Once a week at most). And by all means, eliminate processed food and sugar. Its also advisable, ne critical, for your longevity to drink red wine. Youre welcome.wine and goat cheese for longevity

2.Longevity protocol dictates getting almost constant, daily, natural movement. I love exercise. But like many of you, sometimes dont have time for a dedicated work-out session. Thats okay-dont need it. It is possible to stay healthy by doing those things that create natural movement, such as gardening, yard work, house cleaning, and just plain walking extra steps or climbing the stairs instead of riding the escalator. True story. I had barely said good-bye to the movers of my current home in east coast suburbia when I was hit by a dose of irony. As I was mowing my lawn and shoveling mulch, a well-meaning neighbor sidled up to explain how it was customary in these parts to pay someone to do that for you. Then, she trotted off for a run. Am I the only one that finds that strange? Hello?, some of us enjoy gardening.My Little Garden Retreat

3.Societies where centenarians exist put family first. In todays transient world its not always possible to remain close geographically. So, its even more important to have a strong social support system and a connection with friends of similar outlook and shared values. Being connected helps a person feel happy and satisfied, and happy people are generally healthier and live longer. So, while your two-hundred and thirty-four Facebook friends may miss daily updates of Coco the dogs activities, step away from the computer and get out there and make some real friends to hang with.

9-15-13 heroes run4.Theres a common sentiment among centenarians; a reason to get up in the morning. Even though I sometimes complain about all the things I do for my children (I swear its only sometimes) doing those things helps give my life purpose. Whatever your life situation is, find your purpose and passion, whether its a church group, a sports team, a club, or volunteering at a museum, animal shelter or your childrens school. Feeling needed provides that reason to carry on that we all need.

5. Lastly, the big one. Stress wreaks havoc and most be controlled. See 1-4 for limiting stress. If all else fails, theres always my favorite, take a vacation. People who take vacations live longer. A little gem of information I let my husband in on when I found it. But remember, caving to your kids demands and taking them to Disney, utilizing their intended college funds will ultimately only cause more stress, so plan wisely. Enjoy.







72 thoughts on “Longevity For Dummies

  1. Pingback: Blogelina Commentathon Group D | Blogelina

  2. Glenda Cates

    I am also a later in life mom and worry that I may not be here to see my son grow up and it has kept me up at night so I am going to take some of your tips and not worry as much and just enjoy the time we have together.

  3. Benita

    I learned a long time ago to limit the stress the effects just arent worth it. And you feel so much better when you can get some exercise and start eating a little better!

  4. Michal

    Getting closer to my 40th birthday I understand better the importance of taking care of myself physically and emotionally, and being here as long as I can for my kids. So thank you for a great post and great tips!

  5. Jeryl M.

    I especially love that one about taking vacations. I only wish I had more time and money to take more of them. However, we try to take a lot of day trips and on or two night stays.

  6. Betty Bite

    I truly believe in the eating less meat. I have actually rid all meat from my diet. I loved the last thing about taking more vacations. I am going to have to bookmark this post and show my husband..he he he. No I think vacations are about the only thing that helps me with stress. Even if it is only for a day, it helps.

  7. Debra

    Yes, brave is the word for having 3 babies after 40. Wow, I thought I was late on the mommy age scale. Thanks for the great tips. I really need to follow more of these good measures more often but I do have a sweet tooth that needs to be taken care of or my disposition isnt so sweet. :)

    1. [email protected] Post author

      Thanks Debra. It may seem that way to some, but I didnt marry until I was 38, so my time frame was just shifted about 10 years from whats common!. Sugar is difficult to eliminate. Not only because its addictive, but its in everything packaged and processed. I went without any sugar for one year and that really adjusted my desire for it. I can now eat ONE cookie and be satisfied. I did write a couple posts on sugar and its effects on the body, if youre interested. Try eating a square of dark chocolate instead.

  8. Jebbica

    Great tips! Of course, even if we do all that, were not guaranteed tomorrow, and we should make the most out of each day. Still, Im hoping and praying for a quiet and peaceful departure in my sleep at the ripe old age of 109!

  9. Lana

    Wonderful post! I would add a few things to it learning to meditate, and doing it every day, even for a few minutes, do a little yoga (gentle if needed), being mindful in everything we do, and the most important one- being grateful for everything we have! Thank you for your awesome advise!

  10. Morgan

    Fantastic tips! I need to improve my dietary habits, but am good on my red wine intake 😉 I also loved the reminder that physical activity doesnt always have to mean intentionally going to the gym or on a run. They can be more everyday tasks! Awesome post.

  11. Bakari Chavanu

    Awesome tips for someone like me in his 50s. Im trying to eat better, but my cooking skills are not always the best. Thanks for this post. You remind me of how there is a way to live longer.

  12. russopam

    You are so right about stress wreaking havoc! I have found that the only way to find happiness was to let go of the crab apple pickers in my life and surround myself by those I love and who love me. Everything else falls into place! God bless.

  13. foundfrolicking

    I definitely try to do all of these things, just for overall wellness. Some days are more successful than others, but such is life! Despite the fact that our finances are FAR from ideal, I try not to let things get to me. In the end, I try to remember that stressing out about anything at all is counterproductive, because it changes nothing about the situation, doesnt help you think more clearly, and takes a toll on yourself mentally. Thank you for sharing these great tips! I was just saying to my father the other day how funny it is that there are a lot of things that have been tradition in many cultures for MANY years which were forgetting about, even though theyre so important.

    1. [email protected] Post author

      Thank you. Yes, so many things to stress about, if we allow it. All you can do is educate yourself about healthy behavior and do the best you can. Having family and close relationships is so important.

  14. Diane

    Love this article. I strive hard to live as healthy as possible and gentle reminders are always helpful. I still have to work at moving around more, though now I do all my work at the computer downstairs so I go up and down the stairs all day. That helps a bit. Thanks for the great article :)

    1. [email protected] Post author

      Sometimes I find it ironic that I write a health and wellness blog which keeps me at my desk for too long! I was recently reading about the newest trend in some businesses of stand-up desks. Very interesting. Some people have taken it a step further and created a deck over a treadmill. Serious stuff! But the whole sitting all day has been identified as a huge detriment for our health. I hit the stairs a lot too. Thank you for your comments Diane.

  15. Debbie

    How wonderful for you to take control of what you can control yourself to try to live as long as possible. Even though we arent guaranteed another day, we cant do whatever is within our power to stretch that and make the very most of whatever time were given. As a 50 year old, Im dismayed at how many of my peers think theyre already old. Or too old to do whatever they did in their 20s or 30s. If we let ourselves go already, thats really too bad. Thank you for sharing!

    1. [email protected] Post author

      Thanks Debbie. Remarks about age and not doing certain things are never spoken by me! Old is, as old does. A shocking thing for me was looking at a picture of my Grandmother at my current age. She looks about 75. And she died at 60. I may not look young, but neither do the Okinawan centenarians who have spent a lifetime out in the sunshine. But yet, they are thriving, sitting on floor mats, gardening, and doing more then many people 20-30 years younger in most other cultures. You know the old saying, move it or lose it! Keep rockin!

  16. phoward336

    Love it! I had my kids at 33 and 36 so not quite forty, but old enough that I worry about being around to see them grow up (and grandkids of course!). I think your tips are spot on!

  17. Dawn

    My husband and I just cleared out processed foods from our diet, its not easy, especially in our culture, but weve Already started feeling so much better, and having a ton more energyand we also sleep better at nightwin win win :-)

  18. Dawn @ Reveal Natural Health

    Red wine? Im sold ha ha! When I was little I used to say I wanted to live to be 118 so I could live in 3 different centuries. My struggles are, as a blogger I spend way too much time sitting down. Also, my husband loves meat too much so I would have to slowly cut back in our house.

    1. [email protected] Post author

      The irony of doing a health and wellness blog, spending too much time sitting! Gotta put in lots of movement time to make up for that!! I hear ya about the husband and meat. All you can do is pass on the information, and slowly cut back, as you said. Thanks.

  19. gradybird

    This is great I am admittedly TERRIBLE at keeping myself healthy, but I am starting to make small but consistent changes in my lifestyle and that has seemed to be helping. I always love to read more tips!

  20. Lerie

    Great tips and reminders. Living long and healthy is important. No point living long but sick in bed most of the time. And of course what we eat and our fitness is important but covering different aspects like sleep, stress, fresh air, sunshine, positive thinkingalso helps a lot.

  21. Jeana

    Great advice! I agree with them all but I think that most of us forget to find our purpose. Mine was my child too when he was young. There is nothing like being a parent. But we all must find our own purpose in life. Thanks for the reminder!

  22. Cortney Hogan

    Great tips! I love the family one! I think eating healthy and exercising are great, but reducing stress and spending time with the ones you love is so important to longevity and happiness as well. Thanks for sharing!

  23. MommyKnowsWhatsBest

    You mean I should drink more red wine? Consider it done! This is a great list for those looking to achieve a long and healthy life. I couldnt agree more with the natural movement. I too garden, cut my grass, rake leaves, and shovel snow when others pay people to do it for them. No way! Its all part of a healthy lifestyle, plus Im just too darn particular to have anyone else do it. :)

  24. Nikki Giacobone

    Ive been in a slow, steady process of making changes to my health. Ive witness older relatives health issues and I do not want to walk down that same path. I do need to be more active, thats the one part that I tend to make excuses or procrastinate. At least cleaning around the apartment counts as activity.

  25. Caroline

    My father was 58 when I was born and had to look after me on his own when my mother died when I was 6. He always swore I kept him young although when I look back I wonder how with all the grief I gave him. I recognize him in the points you make. He didnt quite make 100 but was happy to reach a respectable 80 and to meet my husband. Thanks for sharing this, it brought back some good memories.

  26. Owen's Mom

    All good tips to follow! Yes, my husband and his family are farmers so I understand the movement part. Everyone is moving and working it does amazing things. Just be careful not to over use the body. :)

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