Secrets to Longevity

By Dr. Sylvia Marasco, ND
Naturopathic Doctor

“If I had known that I would live this long,
I’d have taken better care of myself”
-Songwriter Eubie Blake

Do you ever wonder how it is that certain people can live to be over 100 years old and still be healthy?  Interestingly, there are people who have asked exactly this question and decided to ask this group of people, also known as centenarians, what has helped them to live a long healthy life.

Scientifically, this topic is not an easy one to study as it appears that there are many variables that contribute to health and a long life. Research today looks at genetics for a possible clue, but perhaps there is much more to the story of longevity.  What if we have a say in our health and wellness by maintaining a positive attitude and making healthy dietary and lifestyle choices?

From a naturopathic point of view, there are many controllable factors that can increase the likelihood of living a long healthy life and based on their responses, our centenarian seniors seem to agree with this idea.  Here are 10 traits that seem to keep people healthy and living well into their hundredth year and beyond.

1) keeping a positive attitude
2) exercising moderately (walking, gardening, biking and swimming
3) living independently
4) “good genes”
5) staying mentally active and always learning something new
6) eating good food
7) clean living: not smoking/drinking excessively
8) family
9) friends
10) faith and spirituality

Where are your strengths on the list and where do you fall short?  The good news is that all of these factors can change with a decision to do so and with appropriate action.  Health, wellness and longevity are all within full grasp. Why not commit to a healthier you?  It is never too late!