By Martin Ebner
Dr Aubrey De Grey, a leading scientist claims that the first person to live to 150 years old has already been born and that the first person to live to 1,000 will be born in the next two decades. He says that by regular “maintenance”, gene therapies, stem cell therapies, immune stimulation and a range of other advanced medical techniques along with the small matter of curing all known diseases and we’re heading into a new era of lives spanning into the hundreds and possibly even thousands of years. I hate to be a pessimist Dr Aubery, but I think you’re bananas and a little bit nuts!
We all want to live a long, healthy and happy life. Long enough at least to watch our children grow into healthy adults. Genes have a heavy role to play in the accountability of premature deaths but in many cases the definitive factor is lifestyle. Our bodies are capable of incredible things, and one of the most impressive is the ability to self-heal. This means that regardless of how you’ve lived your life up until this point, it’s never too late to make the necessary changes to better your chances of living a long and healthy life.
Here are my top 10 tips to improve your lifespan:
1 – Drink water
Our bodies are made up of 60% water and the functions of these bodily fluids include digestion, circulation, creation of saliva, transportation of nutrients and body temperature maintenance. Water is a vital nutrient and to we simply could not live without it!
By drinking 2-3 litres of water per day you can increase energy and fight lethargy, promote weight loss, flush out harmful toxins, improve skin complexion, prevent cramps and even fight headaches.
2. Sleep - zzz
I have never understood or been able to relate to the expression “i'll sleep when i'm dead”. Sleep is one of the most important things we can do to stay healthy. Skip it and you could well be land yourself in an early grave. Sleep promotes muscle growth, reduces stress, improves memory and focus and can even help you lose weight. Go on, hit the snooze button!
3. Ommm your way to old age with yoga
Yoga is absolutely everywhere these days and for very good reason. Yoga can prevent cartilage and joint breakdown, increase bode density and health and increase blood flow. It cleanses the immune system, lowers your blood sugar, improves lung function and digestion and let’s not forget massively reduces stress and anxiety.
Exercise doesn’t have to come in the form of 5 Gruelling blister producing half marathon runs per week or Arnold Swarchenegger’s pre Mr-Olympia weightlifting plan. Any exercise, intense or light can be greatly beneficial to overall health and a giant leap towards a long and healthy life. If you’re new to exercise, start small, take the stairs instead of the elevator, walk to work, take the family bowling or go go-carting (Believe me it’s tougher than it sounds).
5. Eat healthy fat
Fat... you’ve got to love it. The healthy fat that is! Salmon, olive oil, nuts and avocado are all loaded with healthy fats. Those that consume a diet rich in healthy fats have a lower cancer risk, better cholesterol, reduced heart disease risk – the number 1 killer in the world today and better skin and eye health than those that eat a diet low in fat.
6. Avoid processed foods
There’s no denying the ease of pre-packaged, microwaveable “foods”. Throw it in a “box”, electrocute it and Shazam, there’s your breakfast, lunch and dinner. As I wrote that last sentence I cringed. Processed foods contain almost no nutritional content whatsoever, are loaded with salt, sugar and a deadly concoction of chemicals to help maintain Its shelf-life. They contains close to NO fibre and more often than not are jam-packed full of BAD fats (Trans and saturated).
7. Lift weights
There’s a misconception, especially among women that lifting weights is good for nothing more than robbing them of their femininity, in other words bulking up. I’m here to tell you that unless you’re Jean claud van dam’s distant relative, eat 150g+ of protein per day and workout as much as Lou Ferrigno aka the incredible hulk (Trust me, you don’t) you’re not going to get bulky. Regardless of what may think, there’s no denying the health benefits of lifting weights. Muscle fights fat so the more you have, the leaner you’ll be. It also helps fights Osteoporosis, lowers you diabetes risk and promotes a healthier heart. Now drop and give me 50!
8. Wear a helmet
HIV – the virus that causes Aids kills 1.5 million people worldwide every year. As good as it feels to have unprotected sex, don’t. It’s not worth the risk. By wearing a condom, you can massively reduce your risk of sexually transmitted diseases. Wearing condoms can also lessen the risks of HPV in women - the virus that causes Cervical Cancer, from entering their bodies.
9. Avoid Sugar
Sugar is the single worst ingredient in the modern diet. It can cause diabetes, cancer and is the number 1 cause of obesity in the world today. It raises cholesterol levels and can overload your liver. Sugar is also highly addictive so the more you have, the more you need, the more you eat. Next time you’re offered desert, politely say no!
Check out: Sugar, is it bad for you?
10. Drink tea and yes, Coffee
Green tea and coffee contain properties that can help lower the risk of heart disease and stroke. Not only that but Coffee and tea (Especially Green) contain antioxidants that protect against cancer and Alzheimer's.