live longer

This article caught my eye: Surprising Signs You’ll Live Longer Than You Think.

1. Your mom had you young – If mom was under age 25, you’re twice as likely to live to 100 as someone born to an older mom, according to University of Chicago scientists. They suspect that younger moms’ best eggs go first to fertilization, thus producing healthier offspring.

2. You are a tea lover – Both green and black teas contain a concentrated dose of catechins, substances that help blood vessels relax and protect your heart. 

3. You keep fit – “Fit” peopledefined as those who walk for about 30 minutes a dayare more likely to live longer than those who walk less, regardless of how much body fat they have.

4. You skip soda (even diet) – Drinking one or more regular or diet colas every day doubles your risk of metabolic syndromea cluster of conditions, including high blood pressure, elevated insulin levels, and excess fat around the waist, that increase your chance of heart disease and diabetes.

5. You have strong legs – Lower-body strength translates into good balance, flexibility, and endurance. As you get older, those attributes are key to reducing your risk of falls and injuriesparticularly hip fractures, which often quickly lead to declining health.

6. You eat purple food – Concord grapes, blueberries, red wine: They all get that deep, rich color from polyphenols, compounds that reduce heart disease risk and may also protect against Alzheimer’s disease. Polyphenols help keep blood vessels and arteries flexible and healthy.

7. You were a healthy weight teen – Being overweight at age 14 increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes in adulthood. Adults with diabetes are two to four times more likely to develop heart disease than those without the condition.

8. You don’t like burgers – A few palm-size servings (about 2 1/2 ounces) of beef, pork, or lamb now and then is no big deal, but eating more than 18 ounces of red meat per week ups your risk of colorectal cancer. One of the reasons is carcinogens that can form when meat is grilled, smoked, or cured or when preservatives, such as nitrates, are added.

9. You’ve been a college freshman – People with more than 12 years of formal education (even if it’s only one year of college) live 18 months longer than those with fewer years of schooling. Why? The more education you have, the less likely you are to smoke.

10. You really like your friends – Knowing you have people who support you keeps you healthy, mentally and physically. Chronic stress weakens the immune system and ages cells faster, ultimately shortening life span by 4 to 8 years.

11. Your friends are healthy – If your closest friends gain weight, your chance of doing the same could increase by 57 percent. To maintain a healthy lifestyle, it’s important to associate with people who have similar goals.

12. You don’t have a housekeeper – Just by vacuuming, mopping floors, or washing windows for a little more than an hour, the average person can burn about 285 calories, lowering risk of death by 30 percent.

13. You are a flourisher – About 17 percent of Americans are flourishers. They have a positive outlook on life, a sense of purpose and community, and are healthier than “languishers”about 10 percent of adults who don’t feel good about themselves. Most of us fall somewhere in between. In Sardinia and Okinawa, where people live the longest, hard work is important, but not more so than spending time with family, nurturing spirituality, and doing for others.

 

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