The reality is you have more control over your lifespan than you may think. Genetics only play a small role in how long you live. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the average life expectancy is 78.8 years. If you want to live to the average, or surpass it, you should start making changes in your life now. The secrets to living longer go far beyond the obvious acts of eating healthy and reducing stress. Simple things such as improving your oral hygiene, making new friends and getting enough sleep all play a role in how long you will live. Did you know that having a positive attitude can actually add years to your life? It’s true, individuals with that have positive emotions encounter more happiness in their lives and happiness is strongly related to how long you will live. Start today and take action; use these tricks to make positive changes to your life and further your longevity.
1. GET MOVING Adding more walking to your day can add years to your life. According to the Mayo Clinic, regular brisk walking can help you maintain a healthy weight, prevent or manage various conditions, including heart disease and high blood pressure, strengthen your bones and muscles, improve your mood, and improve your balance and coordination. 2. EXPAND YOUR SOCIAL NETWORK Making new friends and expanding your social network has been proven to extend lifespan. Researchers say people with strong social relationships increased their odds of survival over a certain period of time by 50 percent. Friends help us deal with stress, influence us in a positive way and encourage healthy behaviors. 3. FLOSS YOUR TEETH According to 21st Century Dental & Sleep Center, “flossing helps keep your immune system young... the same bacteria that cause periodontal disease also trigger an immune response, inflammation, that causes the arteries to swell.” Therefore, poor oral hygiene puts you at risk for gum infections. Flossing your teeth helps prevent infections, leading to a longer healthier life. 4. EAT YOUR VEGGIES Maintaining a healthy diet is crucial to a long life. Vegetables are low in calories and high in nutrients. Helping you keep a healthy weight while also nourishing your body. The U.S. Food Pyramid encourages 3-5 servings of vegetables per day. (See: 26 Foods with Superpowers) 5. GET ENOUGH SLEEP Depriving ourselves from sleep can lead to serious mental and physical health problems. Some of these include high blood pressure, impaired concentration and weight gain. Getting enough sleep helps maintain vital functions. According to research, “major restorative functions in the body such as tissue repair, muscle growth, and protein synthesis occur almost exclusively during sleep.” 6. QUIT SMOKING Within 12 hours after you smoke your last cigarette your body will begin to heal itself. The levels of carbon monoxide and nicotine in your system will decline and your heart and lungs will begin to repair the damage caused by cigarette smoke (quitsmokingsupport.com). 7. DRINK WATER Water makes up around two-thirds of the human body, it is essential to maintaining a healthy long life. We use water to protect our organs, regulate body temperature, promote proper digestion and eliminate toxins. It’s important to avoid dehydration click here to find out why. 8. TAKE A MULTIVITAMIN It’s almost impossible to consume all of the nutrients your body needs on a daily basis. That’s why multivitamin supplements are extremely important. It’s a healthy way to consume the nutrients and reap the benefits of whole foods. WebMD explains, “vitamin and mineral supplements can help prevent deficiencies that can contribute to chronic conditions.” 9. EAT BREAKFAST Eating breakfast has numerous health benefits. It has been proven to improve concentration, give you energy, aid in weight loss and boost your metabolism. Skipping breakfast can put a damper on your overall lifespan. It has been linked to high blood pressure and obesity. 10. CUT OUT SUGAR Sugary drinks and candies have been shown to cause harm to our heart, aid in obesity and affect our physical appearance. Cutting sugar out of your diet can lower blood pressure, lower bad cholesterol, reduce the risk for heart attack, decrease the risk for depression and will keep your skin looking young. 11. HAVE A POSITIVE ATTITUDE Having a positive attitude and looking at life with an optimistic approach has been show to contribute to a longer life span. Jon Gordon explains, positive people tend to live longer, outperform negative work environments, make better decisions under pressure, are more resilient when facing challenges and have more friends. By Nicole Dossantos via msn health
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