While the cure for mortality is yet to be found, scientists have found numerous ways you can increase life expectancy, and most of them are just some small adjustments you need to make to your daily life. No matter your age, it’s never too late or too early to start living a healthy life. You will begin to see improvements in no time and both your body and mind will thank you for it.
Aging gracefully is not just a matter of genetics, it’s a matter of how you treat yourself and how careful you are with your body. Below is a list of changes you need to start making as soon as possible, to better your life.
Eat just the right amount of food
It’s not exactly a matter of food quantity, but rather a matter of calories. High calorie intake can leave you feeling tired, as your body needs energy to process the food. On the other hand, too few calories can leave you feeling hungry or affect other aspects of your life.
The key is to find the perfect balance between the calories you take in and what you burn during a day. For example, a moderately active woman between 30 and 50 requires around 2,000 calories a day. A man between the same age range requires between 2,400 and 2,600 calories a day. If you overeat, your body will save the calories you are not burning and turn them into fat, while if you don’t eat enough, you will end up feeling tired or in a bad mood.
Add some nuts to your diet
Nuts are a wonder of nature. Apart from being rich in antioxidants, protein and fiber, they are also a great source of vitamin B6, vitamin E, potassium and magnesium, just to name a few minerals. You may have heard that nuts are high in fats, which is why people tend to stay away from them. But there’s a big difference between good fat, such as that found in nuts, and bad fat, such as that found in fatty meat.
Various types of nuts can help you live longer and prevent some chronic diseases:
- Almonds: good for improving cholesterol levels and lower blood pressure
- Pistachios: lowers the risk of heart disease and reduce the rise in blood sugar
- Walnuts: rich in omega-3 acid, improves hearth condition, benefits your brain
- Brazil nuts: incredibly rich in selenium, helps with inflammation
Exercise, exercise, exercise
There is already no need to explain how much even 15 minutes of physical activity a day can help improve your life. Not only does is help your body become healthier, but it also improves brain function and helps release anxiety and stress.
You can start with as little as 15 minutes of physical activity, such as jogging or walking at a fast pace. Then, start increasing the intensity and amount of time each week, until you reach 150 minutes per week, which is the recommended amount of exercise needed to prolong your life.
There are numerous types of exercise you can make, depending on your body and goals. Weight lifting, for example, can help with bone density, which up until 1990 was believed can’t be regained after a certain age. Then, a study revealed that the only group of people who did maintain their bone strength were those who lifted weights.
Quit smoking and reduce drinking
It is known that smokers have a significantly lower life expectancy than those who don’t smoke, but it’s never too late to quit, if you are a smoker. Smoking is amongst the top reasons for premature death and can affect not only your lungs, but your entire body. It is proven that people who smoke may end up living 10 years less than those who have never smoked a cigarette in their life, and quitting before the age of 35 can help you get back around 8 of these years. Plus, if you are looking to get life insurance, companies do take into consideration if you are a smoker or not and may increase your insurance policy.
A glass of wine at dinner is highly recommended, but heavy consumption of alcohol will affect your liver, pancreas and even heart. To keep away from problems, it is recommended that women consume no more than 7 units of alcohol per week, while men should not exceed 14.
Cut back on stress
Happier people live longer and that’s not just an old saying. Stress damages your life perhaps more than smoking or eating sugar, so try to stay away from stressful situations. Women who suffer from anxiety, for instance, are two times more likely to die from a stroke or heart disease.
If you keep a positive mind, even in the most difficult of situations, you will manage to prolong your life with over 3.5%, rather than if you keep stressing over rvery little thing that happens. One way to reduce stress is meditation, which only takes a few minutes of your daily life.
Surround yourself with the right people
Keeping around people who are happy, healthy and only help you improve your mental health can increase your lifespan up to 50%, and that’s no joke. Keep a relatively small social circle and only surround yourself with those who make your life better.
Negative people have a tendency of draining your energy. That does not necessarily mean they are bad people, but constantly taking care of other people’s problems or surrounding yourself with people who have a negative view about life will affect you.
This does not mean that you should not support your finds through hard times. In fact, a study reveals that people who provide support to those in need may live a more happy and long life.
Don’t neglect your sleep
In order for your body and mind to function properly, you need good sleep. Sleep helps your cells regenerate and your body heal when needed and keeps cognitive functions sharp.
In order to live a longer life, you need to develop a regular sleeping pattern, which means going to sleep and waking up around the same hour. The duration of your sleep is also important. Sleeping less than 6 hours a night can increase the chance of early death with more than 10%, while sleeping more than 9 hours can decrease your lifespan with more than 35%. You should aim to get around 7-8 hour of sleep at night, for a better and happier life.