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7 Things You Can Do To Promote Longevity

Updated: May 25, 2023


flower cake in the shape of the number 80

You may have heard that actor Robert DeNiro just became a father again for the 7th time, welcoming a newborn baby into his large family.


While many of us wouldn't want to be parenting a newborn at such an age, it does raise up the question about how to live a long and active life.


With the average life expectancy in the USA dropping to 76 years, what can you do to live well into your 8th, 9th, or maybe even 10th decade?


This is where a combination of positive lifestyle changes, healthy nutrition, and supplementation may help to promote a long and healthy life.


Here is a list of 7 things you can do to promote longevity.


1. Get More Sleep


older woman doing a sleep study with wires attached to her head

When it comes to living a long and healthy lifestyle, there's no way around having healthy lifestyle practices.


Things like getting enough sleep, usually between 7-9 hours a night, help to increase longevity. In fact, studies suggest that maintaining a regular sleep-wake schedule is also important for promoting longevity.


One study found that older individuals who lived the longest adhered to strict sleep-wake schedules and had higher HDL "good" cholesterol and lower triglycerides than older adults who didn't maintain a sleep schedule. [1]


2. Move More to Promote Longevity

Physical movement and exercise are also a big part of staying health and living longer. Studies show that exercise paired with caloric restriction actually help to inhibit aging pathways in the body and promotes longevity.[2]


3. Eat For Your Genes


a close up of a purple translucent strand of double-helix DNA

Everyone knows that you are what you eat but did you know that what you eat can actually help you live longer?


Newer disciplines like Nutrigenomics and Epigenetics are helping to shape a personalized approach to nutrition based on your genes, stage of life, and diseases or disorders.[3]


Nutrigenetics and Nutrigenomics could be the disciplines that allow humanity to collectively live longer.


4. Eat More Whole Foods

Studies suggest that the best foods to eat that increase life expectancy include whole foods like fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Processed foods and excess sugar predictably decreased life expectancy.[4]


5. Stress Less

Everyone knows that stress is unpleasant but did you know that long term stress can cause decrease your life span. Studies suggest that chronic stress can reduce life expectancy by approximately 3 years.[5]


Maybe even more if you take into account unresolved trauma, childhood trauma, and the epigenetic changes that trauma brings about in the genome.


6. Practice Gratitude


a picture of a gratitude journal with a golden pen and a plant

Gratitude is linked to whole host of life promoting health effects like better mood, increased mental health, and even better sleep.


Gratitude undoubtedly leads to less stress which is one of the biggest contributors to a deceased life span. While life can be stressful, practicing gratitude can make you more aware of what's going right in your life than what isn't.


Try journaling or keeping a gratitude jar where you drop a note inside everyday about something that you're grateful for.


7. Longevity Promoting Supplements

Research suggests that certain supplements like curcumin and resveratrol may help to promote long life by reducing DNA damage and preserving mitochondrial function.[6,7] Adding these supplements to an optimal diet and healthy lifestyle may help promote long life well into the twilight years and beyond.



Dr. Candace Mathers, naturopathic doctor in Chicago suburbs
I'm Dr. Candace Mathers, a naturopathic doctor here to help you get healthy so that you can be your best you. I'm a Christian, a mom, and a lover of all t things family friendly fun!




References

  1. Mazzotti DR, Guindalini C, Moraes WA, et al. Human longevity is associated with regular sleep patterns, maintenance of slow wave sleep, and favorable lipid profile. Front Aging Neurosci. 2014;6:134. Published 2014 Jun 24. doi:10.3389/fnagi.2014.00134

  2. Escobar KA, Cole NH, Mermier CM, VanDusseldorp TA. Autophagy and aging: Maintaining the proteome through exercise and caloric restriction. Aging Cell. 2019;18(1):e12876. doi:10.1111/acel.12876

  3. Fenech M, El-Sohemy A, Cahill L, et al. Nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics: viewpoints on the current status and applications in nutrition research and practice. J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2011;4(2):69-89. doi:10.1159/000327772

  4. Fadnes LT, Økland JM, Haaland ØA, Johansson KA. Estimating impact of food choices on life expectancy: A modeling study [published correction appears in PLoS Med. 2022 Mar 25;19(3):e1003962]. PLoS Med. 2022;19(2):e1003889. Published 2022 Feb 8. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1003889

  5. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/03/200311100857.htm

  6. Rasmussen EMK, Seier KL, Pedersen IK, et al. Screening bioactive food compounds in honey bees suggests curcumin blocks alcohol-induced damage to longevity and DNA methylation. Sci Rep. 2021;11(1):19156. Published 2021 Sep 27. doi:10.1038/s41598-021-98614-4

  7. Pallauf K, Rimbach G, Rupp PM, Chin D, Wolf IM. Resveratrol and Lifespan in Model Organisms. Curr Med Chem. 2016;23(41):4639-4680. doi:10.2174/0929867323666161024151233





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