If you ask every person you meet if he or she wants to live long, you might get an outstanding “Yes” answer every time. Longevity and anti-aging go hand-in-hand. Today, the anti-aging is a billion dollar industry, and yet, it seems we’re still finding that fountain of youth.
Many people are spending their money on expensive solutions for longevity and anti-aging. Unfortunately, missing the simple, natural and effective ways. As one man says, picking a good wife is his key to living long.
On the contrary, one woman says her secret to living a long life is avoiding men. So, which one should we follow? Confusing isn’t it?
Life is worth living long while being healthy and happy at the same time. One study1 confirms that healthy lifestyle practices are beneficial for reducing premature death and prolonging life expectancy.
1. Quit Smoking
It’s evident that not all are smokers. However, for smokers who want to live a healthy and long life, quitting smoking is the right decision. Keep in mind, not even a single stick of cigarette a day is not safe.
2. Engage In Regular Physical Activity
Physical activities include regular exercise and doing things that involve physical movements. Studies have shown that regular exercise has many health benefits. It even has a Viagra-like effect, which means it is beneficial for your sex life, as well.
Moreover, simple movements like walking and running are among the most forgotten forms of physical activity. In one study, researchers found that walking an exercise can turn back the brain’s age nine years younger. Today, an increasing number of people are becoming sedentary or inactive.
One of the scientifically proven effective exercises is HIIT(high-intensity interval training). Interestingly, it does not take much time to do it. All you need is a few minutes at least a few times a week. Experts recommend doing HIIT 3 times a week.
Of course, walking and running outdoors are also good additions to physical activity. With outdoor physical activities, there is an additional benefit due to sunlight exposure, which is a good source for Vitamin D.
Moreover, science says that regular exercise including MVPA(moderate to vigorous physical activity) slows down the aging of the cells.
3. Good Nutrition Matters – Stick To It
Proper nutrition means a well-balanced diet. Unfortunately, we are bombarded with fast foods these days.
Fortunately, as long as you’re conscious of what you’re eating, you’ll be able to avoid unhealthy fast foods. Perhaps, an excellent example of a well-balanced diet is the Mediterranean diet.
Additionally, the DASH diet is another good choice too, which is based on the Mediterranean diet. For those who are in the process or planning to lose weight, the Ketogenic diet might be a good choice.
4. Maintain A Healthy BMI
BMI or body mass index is the basis of determining a person’s health concerning weight. So, what is a healthy BMI? Studies suggest that a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is optimal.
Studies confirmed that maintaining an optimal body mass index is beneficial for preventing diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.
However, BMI numbers may not apply to some people. Some experts suggest that BMI is not reliable. Instead, a measurement of waist to height (WHR)2 3 ratio is better and tells a more accurate health status of a person.
The WHR(waist to height ratio) measurement means the waist should measure half of the person’s height.
5. Yoga and Meditation
Yoga and Meditation are both Eastern practices for thousands of years. Many Easterners are still practicing it today. Unfortunately, the influence of the West has led to the decline of people practicing yoga and meditation.
On the other hand, as the West starts to embrace and look into the beneficial effect of yoga and meditation, science has now proven its role for longevity.
When it comes to longevity, yoga and meditation are major factors;
…we review data indicating how breath work can affect longevity mechanisms in some ways that overlap with meditation and in other ways that are different from, but that synergistically enhance, the effects of meditation. We also provide clinical evidence for the use of yoga breathing in the treatment of depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and for victims of mass disasters.Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009 Aug;1172:54-62. doi: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2009.04394.x
Summing It Up
When it comes to achieving long life and staying healthy at the same time, no one thing can help accomplish both of it. It is a combination of the two most important thing in health and wellness, movements and proper nutrition.
One misconception is considering yoga as an exercise. While it involves movement, it is not only exercise but a meditation, as well. The practice of yoga and meditation help in connecting the physical and mental aspect of human, and even spiritual.
What about alcohol? Isn’t it studies are confirming the longevity benefit of alcohol?
It is true. However, other study findings have contradictions. Perhaps, a few shots of red wine a week is helpful. Still, alcohol is optional as everyone is different.
However, if you feel and find moderate alcohol contributes to your health and wellness, do so. Otherwise, stick to healthy habits without it.