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Habits for a Healthy Life

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Gain a decade with these recommendations

Is there a secret to a long life? Last December CNN reported that life expectancy in the U.S. dropped for second year in a row; a downturn that hasn’t been seen in more than two decades. While top 10 causes are the same, with heart disease and cancer at the top, the question remains – how does the most developed country in the world have a declining life expectancy?

Research published in Circulation, looked at longevity and the American lifestyle, specifically, how adopting a low risk lifestyle can extend our current 79.3 year average life expectancy. Investigators reviewed 34 years of data collected from the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study, including that of over 122,000 participants. Low risk factors were defined as not smoking, low body mass index, minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity each day, moderate alcohol intake and healthy diet. By simply adopting all five of these common sense lifestyle factors, researchers saw that women gained a whopping 14 years, while men gained 12 years when compared to those who didn’t adopt a low risk lifestyle.

Being healthy is contagious- surround yourself with healthy people, or make healthy changes together with family and friends. It’s easier and more fun that way. Start small, but make changes to quit smoking, move more, and eat healthier.  These habits go hand in hand and now we know a little more about just how much an impact they can make on our lives. So go on, why not live until 100, and beyond!

Published August 1, 2018

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