The Key to Longevity: How to Live Long and Well


How to Live Long and Well

There is still no magic potion for longevity. If you want to live long and live well and some would say there's little point in living a long life if it's not a reasonably well one, then you need to pay attention to the way you live now.

 That means looking at the lifestyle choices you make, particularly where diet and exercise are concerned. This may sound like the same old mantra you hear every day, but there's a reason for that: there's a huge degree of truth in it. And it's never too late to start making lifestyle changes in order to benefit your health and to help you live a long life.

Diet

 The word diet in this sense is used to describe the foods: Fresh vegetables, fruits, and legumes are all foods naturally low in calories and packed with nutrients. A 10-year study of the eating habits of older individuals (aged 70-79 years), entitled the Health, Aging and Body Composition (Health ABC) Study, found that people who ate healthy foods were significantly less likely to die of any cause compared with participants who ate less healthy foods.

 The healthy food diet includes fruit, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, poultry, fish, vegetables, and reduced consumption of meat, fried foods, and high-calorie drinks. A healthy diet can help us to live longer in a number of ways.

For example, antioxidants, which are found in fruit and vegetables as well as nuts, grains, and poultry, can glycemic index foods can help the body to maintain balanced blood sugar levels thereby helping to control Type 2 diabetes and avoid weight gain; and flavonoids, found in fruits and vegetables, can help fight inflammation, often a commonly occurring ailment as we age. These are just a few ways in which eating well will help you to live longer.

 In addition, cutting back on the number of calories you consume, which is an almost guaranteed by-product of adopting a healthy diet, means that you're also likely to lose weight, which could be an additional, valuable benefit to your health.

Exercise

 We all know that we need to take regular exercise, especially given the way we live nowadays. Few of us take any regular informal exercise, unless we walk or cycle to work. That means that when it comes to regular exercise we have to be disciplined and at times committed.

There are a number of incentives that can help with this however, one of which is that regular exercise could very well help us to live longer. As an option you can purchase gym membership that will also motivate you stay healthy and have a great body.

 According to a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, 30 minutes of moderate exercise five days a week for people age 60-plus improves fitness levels enough for them to enjoy a longer life and improved health. Walking is one of the best forms of exercise anyone can take. It's convenient, doesn't require any specialist equipment, and can be incorporated into the average person's daily schedule. It doesn't matter where you do it, either.

 Aim to walk at a brisk pace of about 2-3 m.p.h and make it part of your daily schedule, this way it will become a habit, and habits such as exercising and healthy eating are the habits you want to adopt for longevity. What else? As well as adopting a healthy diet and regular exercise regimen, if you want to live long and well you may also need to address certain other areas of your lifestyle.

Quit Smoking

 If you smoke, then stop. As with poor diet and lack of exercise, smoking can reduce your life expectancy as well as significantly decrease the standard and quality of your life. If you need help with quitting, speak to your physician.

Manage Stress

 Try to manage the amount of stress in your life. There are some things in life we can't control. Learn to accept that and keep your stress levels manageable. Adopt a healthy balance between work and play, one that keeps you motivated while at the same time enabling you to enjoy life and the time spent with the people in your life.

 Remember that the key to longevity isn't the same for everyone. Try to find out what works for you; what makes you feel good while keeping you healthy and well. And if you decide that you do have to make one or two modifications to your lifestyle, look on these as small investments that will pay off in the long term.

Health & Lifestyles

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