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30 May, 2008

How To-9: "How to Live a Long Life"


How to Live a Long Life


from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

As technology and medicine evolve over time, the life expectancies in most countries are increasing. Here are a few additional ways of increasing the odds that you will make it to that ripe old age of 85 and beyond.

Steps


  1. Follow number of times before the replicating process ends. In other words, those cells aren't there for your body any more, and there are no cells to replace them. That means that you die. So, although sugar feeds the cells and helps the replication process, it shortens their life span, and by extension, your lifespan.
  2. Introduce regular exercise into your life. While most people lead quite busy lives, the benefits of exercise usually present themselves in all areas of your life. Gradually introducing exercise will lead to longer patterns of fitness rather than adopting a harsh workout regime each New Year's. A simple way to start is walking. Studies have shown that walking 2 miles-a-day cuts the risk of death almost in half! 30 minutes a day also works because it reduces as much risk of a heart attack as a highly intense exercise.
  3. Develop a sleep schedule. It is not as important to get a certain number of hours of sleep, so much as it is to get the same amount of sleep, at the same time, day in and day out. Sleep gives your body a chance to heal and regenerate; having a stable sleeping routine will help your body take care of itself more easily. If you do not carry out successful sleep cycles over an extended period of time (48+ hours) you can seriously affect your physical and mental health.
  4. Have close relationships People who are able to confide in close friends or life partners have been shown to live longer and healthier lives. This is due to the alleviation of stress, boredom, and depression. The result will be a mentally and physically healthier person. Cherish your friends and family.
  5. Drink plenty of water. This universal solvent is a most effective weapon against toxins and many other violators. It flushes out your system like nothing else does.
  6. Think first. This step includes looking both ways before you cross the street, as children are taught but many adults take it for granted, and wear protective gear when necessary. Whether you are riding a bike or skateboard, working on a construction site, or handling potentially harmful substances, be careful. While the human skull is quite thick and sturdy, severe head trauma can result from the brain being jostled around inside the skull from an impact, potentially resulting in permanent brain damage or even death.
  7. Reduce causes of stress and depression in your life. This can have a very negative impact on your heart, and other physiology. Learn to cope with stress by trying different relaxation techniques or simply by looking at things differently. Take deep breaths during your most stressful moments.
  8. Quit smoking. Any form of smoke is bad for you, no matter how little you take in. While tobacco companies still stand by their claims that smoking does not cause cancer, there is a consensus in the medical community that smoking is very hazardous to your health and can often result in premature death. Attempt to break the addiction by trying nicotine gum, or a nicotine patch.
  9. Be safe. Avoid potentially dangerous activities that frequently or occasionally end in death or dismemberment, such as bullfighting, or relationships with dangerous people.
  10. Attend yearly physicals. Identifying potentially deadly health problems early can result in their eradication.
  11. Avoid overindulgence. Too much of anything can cause harm, whether it be food, drink, drugs, or even medicine -- even Tylenol can be fatal if ingested in great enough quantity. Non-prescription and illegal drugs may contain chemicals and/or other drugs that are unfit for human consumption, but keep in mind that alcohol and tobacco are among the worst drugs. Do not forget that caffeine is also a drug. Any drug, from alcohol to aspirin, carries with it a risk of shortening and ending your life. If you do decide to use any drugs, be responsible -- do your research, make sure you understand their properties and side effects, and use them appropriately. The same applies to food -- read nutrition labels and do some research to understand what the information means to your health. With anything you ingest, moderation is key.
  12. Wear sunblock. Even if you are dark skinned and have no history of skin cancer in your family, the increasing number of UVA and UVB rays hitting the Earth from the sun pose a threat to anyone and everyone who spends more than 15 minutes a day out of the house or office. Get SPF 30 or higher.
  13. Try not to be afraid. Seriously, the worst stress comes from the inside. If you are in constant fear of anything or everything (phobias) you become as fragile as an ant, asking for life to step on you. Be as passive and easy going as you can. There are bigger things like earthquakes, stray bullets, automobiles and airplanes that can kill in an instant but which you cannot defend against, and are not afraid of anyway, right? Fear is a tool, and it has a purpose, but it is most often bad for your well-being. Do not be afraid, be aware.
  14. Drink lots of tea. There are two main types of tea - green and black. Both are from the the same tree, however green tea is less processed than black tea. Green tea has many health benefits, including reportedly reducing the chance of heart attack and cancer. Other benefits include increased energy and metabolic rate (good for weight loss), and high antioxidant content (slows down aging). Black tea has these benefits also but at a reduced level. Try and drink 5 cups of green tea a day. Using more tea bags or leaves is a better way to make strong tea than brewing longer.

  15. Eat dark chocolate. One piece of dark chocolate a day can benefit the heart as cocoa solids have a beneficial effect of the heart and arteries. Dark chocolate has more antioxidants than other kinds of chocolate. Look for 60% unprocessed cocoa or more. Chocolate also makes you happy (in case you did not know) because it releases endorphins. Chocolate that has been alkalized or dutched loses most of it's anti-oxidant capacity.
  16. Drink one glass of red wine a day. Red wine contains substances called polyphenols which maintain the elasticity of the artery walls and also act as antioxidants - thus helping maintain a healthy heart and slowing down ageing. Anecdotally, the oldest woman in the world, Jeanne Calment, drank one glass of wine a day, and she lived until she was age 122. If you would rather not drink wine everyday, consider eating red grapes instead.
  17. Look on the bright side. Having an optimistic point of view is healthy and those who drink from the cup that is half full tend to have a much stronger resilience to any health problems.
  18. Enjoy fish such as salmon. Eating Wild Alaskan Salmon 2 to 3 times a week can reduce your chance of contracting coronary heart disease by up to 30 percent as well as contribute to reducing your risk of other factors such as diabetes, Alzheimer's, asthma and so on. You should be sure to only buy wild caught Alaskan Salmon. Atlantic and farm raised fish are usually contaminated.
  19. Keep on working. It's been proven that people who stay active in their jobs, or volunteer work, live longer. Being a part of a community and/or work-force into your golden years will keep your life filled and fulfilling up until the end.
  20. Use your mind. This will help you make better decisions to help you live longer. It will also help in survival situations. There's no point to living a long life if you are not happy, and this is one way to enlighten yourself and enjoy life. Lastly, people who read and exercise their mind a lot tend to be less prone to Alzheimer's.
  21. Sign up for cryonics. Every one should have a backup plan. With cryonics your head/body will be vitrified immediately after death so that the decay part doesn't come and future medicine has another chance to try to heal you.
  22. Support life extension and rejuvenation research. The SENS project is a good place to start
  23. Make Sure You Get Your 5 a Day! Fruit and Vegetables are extremely good for you!
  24. Smile. Smiling is like relaxation. It relieves stress and changes your attitude. Not only more people will like your positive attitude, but you'll change your mood. Having a positive attitude can add 7 years to your life (according to researchers)! So put a smile on!
  25. Laugh and Hug! If you laugh or hug every day in an average life span, you live seven more years!


Tips


  • There are moisturizers (both facial and body) with built-in sunblock that don't make you smell like you just came from the beach. In addition to keeping your skin protected, lotion will help keep it firm.
  • Eat Garlic, but use it in moderation (need I say more?). Having certain quantities of garlic in daily meals actually keeps you from getting sick and builds up your immune system.
  • Study the lifestyles and habits of "centenarians" - people who've lived past 100 years old.
  • While the body is always an important factor in long life, do not neglect your psychological health. What good is having a body that can live for 120 years if your brain dies from the inside out at 50? If you experience any changes in your attitudes or behaviors, such as a quickening of the temper, a dulling of the senses, or a slowness in speech or thought, consult a mental health professional. It may be nothing, but better safe than sorry. Also, reducing stress and anxiety will help to keep your mind healthy.


Warnings


  • Don't get so caught up in living long that you forget to enjoy life! A happy life full of strong relationships will definitely reduce stress and make your long stay worthwhile.
  • Be wary of bad science. Many things found to be beneficial to your health today may tomorrow be declared harmful. Make sure you research each alteration to your diet before you implement it. Consider the source and where the funding for the research came from. If in doubt, consult a doctor or two.
  • Too much water can also be bad for you and have its own side effects. Several glasses a day, or just water in supplement of other liquids during meals will be enough.
  • "Avoid Heavy Lifting" Once you are older, above sixty-five, be careful to not lift much weight, it's easy to tear or injure various tissues in later life.


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Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Live a Long Life. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

1 comment:

Emily said...

Re: #19, we're having a salmon recipe contest and awarding the creator of the best recipe with 15 lbs. of wild salmon! Check it out at MarxFoods.com