14 Ways to Live a Long Life

How to Have a Long Life

Looking for some tips on how to increase your life expectancy? This article can help you live a long life. Read on and enjoy your longer life!

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14 Tips on How to Live a Long Life

Below are some best ways on how to live a long healthy life:

1.  Avoid carcinogens.

Carcinogens cause cancer, but you can take steps to avoid them. The most common carcinogens that reduce life expectancy are smoking and too much sun exposure.

2.  Change patterns of consumption.

  • Drink plenty of water. The universal solvent is a most effective weapon against toxins and many other violators. It flushes out your system like nothing else does. If the water you lose isn’t replaced, you can become dehydrated. Thirst, headache, fatigue, and weakness are all signs that your body may be running short of water. Note: You lose nearly 10 cups of water every day through breathing, sweating, urine, and stool.
  • Avoid simple carbohydrates. Carbohydrates cause your insulin levels to rise, which has been associated with increased incidence of breast cancer (in menopausal women), not to mention diabetes.
  • Avoid overindulging. Too much of anything can cause harm, whether it be food, drink, drugs, or even medicine. If you take prescriptions, be responsible–do your research, make sure you understand their properties and side effects and use them appropriately. The same applies to food–read nutrition labels and do some research to understand what the information means to your health. With anything you ingest, moderation is key.
  • Consider an intermittent fasting diet. Studies suggest that periodic fasting promotes better heart health. Pick a day when you can afford to skip two meals, and make it a ritual you do every month or two.
  • Balance your Omega-3:Omega-6 ratio. Most experts agree that the omega 6:3 ratio should range from 1:1 to 5:1.  For most Americans, the ratio ranges from 20:1 to 50:1.

3.  Consider squatting to defecate.

Did you know that squatting when going defecating may greatly reduce your chances of getting colorectal cancer (which is potentially fatal) and/or hemorrhoids (which are mostly just unpleasant)?

4.  Consume antioxidants.

Antioxidants decrease the chance of developing cancer. Consider these easy ways to do it:

  • Drink lots of tea. There are two main types of tea–green and black. Both are from the the same tree, however green tea is less processed than black tea. Green tea also has many health benefits, including reportedly reducing the chance of heart attack and cancer. Other benefits include increased energy and metabolic rate (good for weight loss), and high antioxidant content (slows down aging). Black tea has these benefits also, but at a reduced level. Using more tea bags or leaves is a better way to make a strong tea rather than brewing longer. (Note that green tea typically contains caffeine so be careful not to have too much and not drink later in the day.)
  • Eat dark chocolate. One piece of dark chocolate a day can benefit the heart as cocoa solids have a beneficial effect on the heart and arteries. Dark chocolate has more antioxidants than other kinds of chocolate. Look for 60% unprocessed cocoa or more. Chocolate also makes you happy (in case you did not know) because it releases endorphins.
  • Drink one glass of red wine a day. Red wine contains substances called polyphenols, which maintain the elasticity of the artery walls, and also acts as antioxidants–thus helping maintain a healthy heart and slowing down aging. Anecdotally, the oldest woman in the world, Jeanne Calment, drank one glass of wine a day, and she lived until she was age 122. If you would rather not drink wine everyday, consider eating red grapes instead.
  • Make sure you get your 5 a-day.Fruits and vegetables are extremely good for you, and should make up a large part of your diet. Try to ingest 5 servings of these fibers per day.

5.  Reduce stress.

Finding ways to reduce your stress and live a calmer, more peaceful existence can improve your lifespan.

  • Have close relationships. People who are able to confide in close friends or life partners have been shown to live longer and healthier lives. This is due to the alleviation of stress, boredom, and depression. The result will be a mentally and physically healthier person.
  • Reduce causes of stress and depression in your life. Stress can have a very negative impact on your heart, and other physiology. Learn to cope with stress by trying different relaxation techniques or simply by looking at things differently. Take deep breaths during your most stressful moments, or learn to meditate.
  • Try not to be afraid. The worst stress comes from the inside. If you are in constant fear of anything or everything (phobias) you become as fragile as an ant, asking for life to step on you. Be as passive and easygoing as you can. There are bigger things like earthquakes, stray bullets, automobiles, and airplanes that can kill in an instant but which you cannot defend against. Fear is a tool, and it has a purpose, but it is most often bad for your well-being if not controlled. Don’t be afraid, be aware.
  • Look on the bright side. Having an optimistic point of view is healthy, and those who drink from the cup that is half full tend to have a much stronger resilience to any health problems.
  • Keep on working. It’s been proven that people who stay active in their jobs, or do volunteer work, live longer. Being a part of a community and/or workforce in your golden years will keep your life filled and fulfilling up until the end.
  • Smile. Smiling is like relaxation – it relieves stress and changes your attitude. Not only will more people like your positive attitude, but you’ll change your mood. Having a positive attitude can add 7 years to your life (according to researchers), so put a smile on.

6.  Cultivate a sense of purpose.

Many people over the age of 100 claim a reason behind their life, and suggest that their reason has helped them reach such ages. Some reasons for living can be as practical as providing food for others, or even as abstract as providing inspiration. One woman even claims that her age itself has become her reason for living!

7.  Watch out for problems.

Steer clear of these potential pitfalls:

  • Think first. This step includes looking both ways before you cross the street, as children are taught but many adults take it for granted, to wearing protective gear when necessary. No matter what you do or where you are, be careful. While the human skull is quite thick and sturdy, severe head trauma can result to the brain being jostled around inside the skull from an impact, potentially resulting in permanent brain damage or even death.
  • Be safe. Avoid potentially dangerous activities that frequently or occasionally end in death or dismemberment such as bullfighting. Also avoid relationships with dangerous people.
  • Wear a seat belt. Always put on a seat belt when you’re in a car, whether you’re the driver or a passenger.
  • Get yearly physical exams. Early identification of potential health problems could save your life.

8.  Exercise regularly.

While most people lead quite busy lives, the benefits of exercise usually present themselves in all areas of your life. Gradually introducing exercise to your regular routines will lead to longer patterns of fitness rather than adapting a harsh workout regime each New Year’s.  A simple way to start is walking. Studies have shown that walking 2 miles every day cuts the risk of death by almost in half! Thirty minutes a day also works because it reduces as much risk of a heart attack as a highly intense exercise.

9.  Educate yourself.

One of the most consistent markers of longevity across the world, in all economic conditions, is higher education. If you stay in school and get a degree, it seems to increase your chances of living longer more than almost anything else. This is, of course, apart from taking physical care of yourself with regular exercise, eating healthy and not smoking.

10.  Write a gratitude list.

When we write a gratitude list of all the things we are thankful for, we will feel much better about our circumstances. When we focus on what we have now, we attract more good things into our lives. Expressing gratitude helps us live longer.

11.Develop a sleep schedule.

It is not as important to get a certain number of hours of sleep so much as it is to get the same amount of sleep, at the same times day in and day out. Sleep gives your body a chance to heal and regenerate; having a stable sleeping routine will help your body take care of itself more easily. If you do not carry out successful sleep cycles over an extended period of time (48+ hours) you can seriously affect your physical and mental health.

12.  Use your mind.

This will help you make better decisions to help you live longer, as well as help in survival situations. There’s no point to living a long life if you are not happy, and this is one way to enlighten yourself and enjoy life.

  • Pick up a good book that forces you to think. People who read and exercise their mind a lot tend to be less prone to Alzheimer’s.
  • Do puzzles. You can do a cardboard puzzle on the kitchen table, a daily crossword, Sudoku or something more complicated. Whatever it is, it should exercise your problem-solving skills.

13.  Floss every day.

Certain bacteria live in your teeth and can cause arteries to swell. Swollen arteries can lead to heart disease.

14.  Laugh at least once a day.

You hear this day in and day out, laughter is the best medicine. While there may not be proven scientific benefits, every time you laugh, you feel good inside. So take time to laugh today and everyday. Play a crazy game, meet up with friends or watch comedy. Whatever makes you laugh, go ahead and do it. You will feel a million times better.

(Adapted from How to Live a Long Life.)