As I was driving into work this morning I heard an interesting story of a woman from Chicago who was turning 100. As is often the case she was asked what her secret was that attributed to her longevity. Her responded by saying hot dogs fries and diet cola 3 times a week was her secret! Now while that regiment may work for her it we know better that for that to work for everyone. This got me curious into what factors appear to be most important to living to such an advanced age. After doing a little research several factors continued to come up over and over again.
- Family – Having a close knit family with plenty of love is a recurring trend in centenarians.
- Non Smokers – Smoking has a negative effect on nearly all of our bodies systems but specifically on respiratory, immune, and cardiovascular systems.
- Plant Based Diet – Not to say specifically vegetarians but diets heavy in plant based food increase longevity.
- Constant Physical Activity – Isaac Newton said it best with objects in motion stay in motion. This is true for humans too!
- Social engagements – Many people forget about mental health is an important factor in our overall well being. Social involvement has a large impact on our health.
- Legumes – Centenarians on average have a diet filled with Legumes more so than those who do not live as long.
These factors appear to be the most consistent for those who live to 100 years or more. Many other factors are at play including genetics, low levels of alcohol consumption, activities such as gardening, and decrease intake of processed sugars and meats have been found as commonalities in centenarians. So if you are looking to live to 100 you can try the hot dog, fries, and diet cola but fallowing the above suggestions certainly will increase your odds.