Evidence Based Fact Checked

8 Secrets of longevity: How to Live a Long and Happy Life [Definitive Guide]

Many people believe that the secrets of longevity are totally dependent on genes and determined by it.

However, the contribution of genes to your longevity is very small. Additionally, the secret of longevity lies in many environmental factors such as a healthy diet and lifestyle.

You need to understand that there is no shortcut to health, wealth and happiness. So, the secrets of longevity are determined by how you incorporate a series of small habits daily in your lifestyle.

Lots of research and studies are conducted to discover the secret of longevity. They come up with many valuable lessons that will help us improve and allow us to live a long, healthy and amazing life.

We have outlined several factors that can affect your longevity in the long-term.

Secrets of Longevity

Eating a balanced diet

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Calorie Restriction increase longevity

In several studies, it has indicated that regular intake of a balanced diet will promote good health and longevity.

Further, it has illustrated that long-term calorie restriction with the proper amount of nutrients will result in several metabolic adaptations. In addition, it reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, hypertension, type 2 diabetes and also cancer.

Also, in another study, it has demonstrated that calorie restriction can lengthen the life span and also prevent any age-related diseases.

Increase the intake of healthy plant foods

If you are consuming a wide variety of plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, and whole grains, then it may decrease the risk of getting the disease and increase longevity.

In a recent study, the Mediterranean diet has shown to increase life expectancy and decrease the risk of stroke, depression, coronary heart disease, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer.

Further, in another study, it has shown that adherence to a Mediterranean diet or high-quality diet by consumption of fruits and vegetables will reduce the mortality rate tremendously.

Another study suggests that the vegetarian diet has reduced premature death.

Moreover, according to several studies, the intake of nuts has reduced the risk of dying.

Nuts contain a good amount of fiber, antioxidants, protein, and other beneficial plant compounds. They are also rich in vitamins and minerals such as potassium, magnesium, folate, copper, niacin, vitamin E and B6.

Further, in another study, it has shown that the consumption of nuts has reduced the risk of getting heart disease, inflammation, diabetes, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, and cancer.

Wrap-up: Intake of healthy plant foods will significantly boost your immune system and promote longevity.

Weight loss for longevity

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Excess body weight reduce longevity

Excess body weight has given rise to many health-related issues such as insulin resistance, inflammation, metabolic and hormonal disorders.

It has established a direct association between increased body mass index (BMI) and the risk of getting type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and several types of cancer.

Although, the recent study and analysis have supported the fact that overweight individuals have a lower mortality rate compared to normal individuals.

Moreover, maintaining a healthy weight through a healthy diet and regular physical activity can help in the prevention of chronic diseases and the promotion of healthy aging.

Reduce Visceral fat to increase longevity

Visceral fat is a type of body fat that is developed over time around the center of the body. It is basically located near several vital organs such as the liver, stomach, and intestines.

Several studies have shown a direct relation of longevity with visceral fat. With the presence of visceral fat, the risk of getting type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, stroke, and insulin resistance has increased.

Further, the risk factors may vary with your current weight, weight loss regime, and activity level. So, it is necessary to reduce visceral fat to prevent getting age-related diseases and to increase longevity.

Stop overeating

Overeating is one of the bigger global problems that lead to many health issues. Lots of research has proven that overeating can decrease your life expectancy.

Many evidence and studies have suggested that overeating has great influences on mortality rate and its associated diseases.

The calorie restriction has shown great results in slowing down the aging process and increase overall health and vitality.

The research was conducted on Okinawan people, who live on a remote Japanese island. These people have the lowest rate of obesity and a higher percentage of people living beyond 100.

The secret of longevity is that they stop eating when they are 80% full.

American research has found that animals can live twice as long when they reduce food intake by one-third.

When we stop overeating then we can maintain a healthy metabolism and can reduce long-term stress on our body.

Wrap-up: Control on your eating habits will keep you in shape, reduce visceral fat and increase longevity.

Don’t smoke and drink

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Quit smoking for longevity

We all know smoking is bad for us. And, most of the leading cause of death around the world is due to smoking.

Cigarette smoking leads to premature death. It has proven that life expectancy for smokers is 10 years shorter compared to nonsmokers.

Moreover, in a study, it has concluded that smoking will remain the strong risk factors for any type of premature mortality.

In a recent study, conducted among cigarette smoking UK women in the age of 50s, 60s, and 70s, has established two-thirds of all deaths are caused by smoking.

Further, if you quit smoking before the age of 40 can reduce the risk of dying from smoking-related disease by more than 90%.

Also, if you stop smoking cigarette at the age of 30 can avoid at least 97% of smoking-related disease.

In another study, it has shown that life expectancy has increased by 8.5 years for men and 6.1 to 7.7 years for women who quit smoking at the age of 35 years.

Even if you quit smoking at the age of 65 years,  then you may gain 1.4 to 2.0 years of life.

Reduce alcohol intake for longevity

Heavy alcohol consumption is greatly associated with increased mortality. It can lead to various diseases like cardiac arrhythmia, cardiomyopathy, pancreatitis, hemorrhage stroke, and hepatic cirrhosis.

Although, some previous studies have suggested that the intake of alcohol in older adults can help in lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease and death.

But, recent studies have totally reconstructed the argument and proven that no level of alcohol consumption can improve health.

Moreover, assessing the relationship between alcohol intake and longevity is extremely challenging. Also, people’s alcohol drinking habits totally changes with time.

However, in a recent study, it has also concluded that moderate or occasional alcohol drinkers have higher mortality rates compared to non-drinkers.

Also, in another study, it was revealed that excessive drinking can have a negative effect on cognitive function.

Wrap-up: Drinking alcohol regularly can increase your mortality rate. It may also give rise to many health diseases and can affect negatively your cognitive function.

Exercise and Fitness

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There is no doubt that staying physically fit will keep you healthy and contribute to longevity.

But, habitual exercise and fitness routine will also promote healthy weight, fight depression, prevent diabetes and also reduces the chances of getting dementia.

Regular Exercise increase longevity

Our muscles and joints need to be moved frequently in order to keep them lubricated. So, when our joint does not move for a long time then it will become stiff and compressed. Also, it will start depositing calcium.

Moreover, regular exercise also prevents your entire body from injuries and keep you moving your body as long as possible.

In a prospective cohort study, regular exercise for 15 min a day has reduced the risk of premature death by 14% and increase the life expectancy for 3 years.

Furthermore, in another study, it has concluded that when you do moderate-to-vigorous-intensity physical activity for 150 min in a week will reduce your mortality by 22% in older adults.

Also, in another cohort study, it has shown that when you continue with vigorous physical activity then it will further reduce all-cause mortality.

Wrap-up: Regular exercise for 150 min per week will reduce mortality to a greater extent. If you increase exercise for 450 min per week, it will add-up more additional health benefits.

Regular workout and strength training slows down the aging process

If you do regular workout and strength training for a longer time, it will reduce the aging process, boost cardiovascular health and also prevent any type of injury.

When you enter menopause (women) and andropause (men), hormones start to decline. Due to which it may have the possibility to start to cause Sarcopenia.

Sarcopenia is a condition which arises with the loss of muscle mass and strength. The risk of getting Sarcopenia is correlated with less physical activity and poor quality of life.

Strength training increases mortality by stimulating human growth hormone (HGH) levels naturally and also increases the production of testosterone. Also, it stimulates muscle growth and helps in cellular repair.

In a research study, it has concluded that strength training improves cognitive abilities, physical performance, walking speed and self-esteem. Also, resistance training assists in the prevention of type 2 diabetes, enhance cardiovascular health, improve insulin sensitivity and decrease low-density lipoprotein cholesterol.

Wrap-up: Strength training has shown to reverse aging factors and thus helps  increase longevity.

Get rid of chronic stress and anxiety

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Chronic stress and anxiety may significantly decrease your life expectancy.

In a study, it was perceived that mental stress has been greatly associated with cardiovascular disease. Further, in a study, it was examined the direct correlation of anxiety and mortality in middle-aged women.

Moreover, in a study, it was revealed that anxiety disorders will increase the mortality risk in both older men and women.

The laughter and optimism are two factors to introduce when you are dealing with stress and anxiety.

However, studies have shown that pessimistic individuals have a decreased rate of longevity compared to optimistic individuals.

Also, studies detected a great impact on neuroendocrine and stress hormone response during mirthful laughter.

Wrap-up: Chronic stress and anxiety were shown to be a greater risk factor for premature death among middle-aged men and women. Also, maintaining optimistic outlook will increase your lifespan.

Get a Good sleep

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Sleep plays an important role in the maintenance of longevity in humans. It also regulates cell functioning and produces a new cell when we are sleep.

Moreover, most of the hormones are produced or repaired during sleep. So, it is necessary to have proper sleep to avoid any unnecessary stress on your body.

A recent study has revealed that maintenance of specific sleep patterns has a great impact on the aging process. Additionally, maintaining a regular sleep-wake schedule will give rise to higher HDL cholesterol and lower triglyceride.

Several studies have examined the association between longevity and sleep duration among adults.

Further, medical evidence has suggested that both short and long duration of habitual sleep will have an adverse effect on your health.

However, other medical evidence has emerged which has shown regular sleep disturbance or sleep disorders give rise to various diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and inflammation.

Wrap-up: Longevity has direct correlation with sleep. To increase longevity, maintain your sleep patterns and sleep duration.

Feel Happy and Content

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Be content for longevity

When you are content of what you are, what you do and what you have then this mental approach will lead to longevity.

While if you are not satisfied with what you have and keep developing a thought like “I’m worth more”, “I need more” and “I’m not attractive enough” then it affects your life expectancy.

In a recent study, it has evaluated how subjective well being can cause better health and longevity.

Subjective well being evaluate the quality of life which includes both emotional reactions and cognitive judgments. It considers certain factors such as life satisfaction, absence of negative emotions, positive emotions, and optimism.

During these studies, subjective well being has influenced both health and longevity in normal populations. Also, subjective well being lengthens the life of people with certain diseases.

Moreover, positive feelings strengthen health and longevity beyond negative feelings.

Happiness and longevity

When you are happy then you can significantly increase your longevity.

A recent study has examined the relationship between happiness and longevity extensively.

It has revealed that death risk among individuals who are very happy is 6% less compared to pretty happy individuals. While the risk of death among individuals who are pretty happy is 14% less compared to not happy individuals.

In another study, it was revealed that long and happy life expectancy among women across all ages is higher compared to men. Further, it says that health, wealth status, race, age, and activity limitation are the core factors that are significantly associated with happiness among men and women.

Wrap-up: Happiness will significantly affect your lifespan.

Good and Healthy Social Network

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Social and community ties are very important to assess the mortality rate.

A study revealed that people with more social and community ties are less likely to die early compared to people with less social and community ties.

Moreover, in another study, it has examined that social isolation is one of the factors for the higher mortality rate. Also, it was observed that isolated people have less life expectancy.

So, people with small social networks have an elevated risk of mortality.

However, the study is concluded with the fact that poor quality and low quantity of social ties have adverse health outcomes and longevity.

Further, poor quality social ties will give rise to health conditions like high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, weaken your immune function and raise inflammatory diseases.

Wrap-up: Social and community ties is essential for longevity but one should avoid poor quality social ties.

The social relationship for longevity

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Social relationship plays a central role in establishing the health outcomes. It is totally dependent on the quantity and quality of the relationship and other social variations like gender and race.

It not only affects your physical and mental health but also determines your mortality rate.

During the studies, it has examined that social relationships can be emotional support for most people or it can be stressful.

Further, it has said that marriage is one of the prime examples of social relationships that can be supportive or stressful for most individuals.

Additionally, the poor marital relationship has been associated with a compromised immune system and endocrine functionality and depression.

Stress in social relationships has contributed hugely in childhood, adolescence, and adulthood.

The poor quality of social relationships has lead people to engage in unhealthy behaviors such as bad food consumption, heavy drinking, and smoking.

However, other findings show that a robust relationship in which both emotional and social support from others can be beneficial for health.

Martial status such as marriage, divorce, and widowhood has shown long-term effects on health.

Additionally, both widowed and divorced who do not remarry has shown in worse health condition compared to currently married.

In a recent study, it has depicted that martial disruption has given rise to many chronic conditions and mobility limitations.

Wrap-up: Social relationships will affect your health both negatively and positively. The poor social relationship will increase mortality while supportive and healthy social relationships will increase longevity.

Bottom Line:

The secrets of longevity are dependent on many factors such as healthy eating, stress-free life, healthy social relationship, and community ties, exercise, and weight loss regimes.

To boost your longevity, you need to incorporate these healthy habits.

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