Adding 10 years to your life might sound too good to be true, but the latest health research tells us that lifestyle accounts for 75 per cent of longevity with genes at only 25 per cent. Simple choices – including those outlined below – play an important role in longevity. Nordic peoples have already mastered this. They, in particular, live longer and look younger.
Many of us sit still for very long periods of time, especially at work. But studies show that sitting still for more than 20 minutes at a time contributes to poor circulation, which increases our risk of cardiovascular disease. Small, daily movement – such as a short walk outside or sweeping or dusting your apartment – will prolong your life. Set a timer as a reminder to move.
2Enjoy The Sun In Moderation
The right amount of sunbathing contributes to a longer, healthier life. Sunlight offers vital vitamin D, which boosts our immune system. To stock up on this important vitamin, sunbathe 15 minutes each day during the summer. But don’t burn. Too much sunshine will get you two things: wrinkles and an increased risk of skin cancer.
3Eat Yourself Healthy
It’s true. You are what you eat. Certain foods strengthen our immune system. So, make good choices like Nordic people do. Stock up on immune-boosting berries, mushrooms, nuts and root vegetables such as carrots, onions and beetroots. Eat moderate-sized portions at mealtimes, with plenty of vegetables and, for antioxidants, drizzle healthy fats oil over your dish.
4Keep Enjoying Coffee & Red Wine!
A few cups of coffee, a walk and a crossword a day keeps dementia away. The mechanism behind coffee’s protection against dementia and Alzheimer’s disease is not fully known, but researchers suspect coffee’s natural antioxidants are the reason. Don’t like coffee? Try drinking black or green tea. Or wine! Studies show that moderate intake of alcohol for people middle-aged and older can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. My personal tip is red wine, which is rich in antioxidants.
5Limit Sugar Intake
Replace soft drinks and juices with cold fresh water. Soda and juice increase blood sugar and insulin levels, which contributes to inflammation in the body. Inflammation is linked to cancer, cardiovascular disease and other ailments.
6Practice Your Positive Thinking
People with a positive outlook live an average of seven years longer than pessimists. Optimistic people have a better quality of life, too. In my book, I show how people who experience bouts of pessimism are more likely to have high stress levels, which is a big factor in aging. If you find yourself feeling negative, try thinking in a new way. Say positive things aloud, feeding your brain with mood-boosting messages. Practice gratitude for what you have and laugh and smile more often. Life is meant to be enjoyed!