Would you want to live to be 100? You’d be a “centenarian”! Guess what’s the official name for someone who lives to be 110? (Supercentenarian) Currently, there are 105,000 centenarians in the United States. How about supercentenarians? “65”. But . . . unofficial estimates may increase that number to 350. Here’s some good news for women – 8 out of 9 centenarians are women. Men you do the math- not good for us! 19% use cell phones, 12% use the Internet and 3% participated in online dating. Go figure!
Why do some people live so long? Genetics, culture, lifestyle, diet, clean living? Interestingly the #1 social factor was “education”. For most of us though it is a bit late to go back to school. Guess what’s next? According to Harvard Professor of Policy Lisa Berkman, “remain socially active”. Some seniors do pretty well with this. Others may need help. Here are some services that we offer here at Home & Healthy that can help you stay active.
Transportation to social events, clubs, church and family/friend events.
Help setting up internet assisted communication tools to keep in touch with family, friends or
Planning, coordinating, and setting up (and cleaning up) a party or social get-together at your
Companionship – creating family photo albums, organizing local trips (boardwalk, lighthouse, zoo,
lunch, sightseeing, festivals, areas of interest).
What can you do to extend not just the “quantity” but the quality of your years as well? Regulate your insulin through diet and exercise. Sugar and grains increase insulin, which is like pushing the pedal down on your aging “accelerator”. Also avoid fructose and high fructose corn syrup. When consumed in excess, sugar and fructose act as a toxin and drive multiple disease processes in your body. Unprocessed foods – those found in the produce section of the grocery store – are tasty, nutritious and help to heal your body.
Good quality sleep is important in preventing illness. Ideally you want more than 7 hours but less than 8. Interrupted or impaired sleep dramatically weakens your immune system, accelerates tumor growth, impairs memory and reduces your performance with physical and mental tasks. Sleep in total darkness in a room no higher than 70 degrees. 60 to 68 is best. No TV in the bedroom. Keep bedtime consistent – even on weekends. No fluids within 2 hours before bed. Socks can help blood circulate better which helps induce and maintain sleep. Reading something spiritual or uplifting right before bed is beneficial for your subconscious mind. No suspense novels! Also keep in mind that daytime exercise helps sleep that night.
Keep your Vitamin D levels optimal. Have your doctor order it on your next blood test. Levels of 50 to 70 mg/ml or higher have been found to be related to longevity and acts as a cancer preventer. One study of 3,500 patients found that most adults need 8,000 I.U.’s of Vitamin D3 supplement per day to attain this level. This is much higher than the current RDA of 600/day. Bone health is also improved with Vitamin D.