One of the most frequent things people want to know is how to increase their life expectancy. Our life expectancy is fairly good now sitting at 80 years of age, but everyone always wants to squeeze out as many years as possible, as they should. Our life expectancy might decrease with the amount of chemicals we are now exposed to so it’s important to limit those.
The answer to longevity is complex, it requires dedication and self control. In the simplest forms, we would suggest that you avoid toxins, and supply your body with nutrients. It sounds easy but it’s not, our world is filled with hidden contaminants that big corporations and big government aren’t transparent about (See: Tobacco Companies). For that reason, We’ve compiled a list of tips to increase your longevity.
1. Water: Our most precious commodity, it goes without saying that we need water to survive but not only that, we need clean water. You might be wondering why this would be on the list as most of us get clean water from our taps. The problem is a lot of our water contains hidden contaminants like Pharmaceuticals that over time poison us. Water is also treated with Chlorine and Fluoride where opinions differ on if it’s safe. Not only that but if you aren’t in control of your own water you might end up with a toxic supply like what happened in Flint, Michigan or in Walkerton, Canada. Don’t use water from plastic water bottles, or anything plastic as most plastic products release estrogenic chemicals.
2. Food: Aside from water, food is the most important. Over the last 30 years our food supply has changed immensely. Genetically Modified Foods (GMO) are sprayed with round up (glyphosate) which has been classified as a “probable carcinogenic to humans”. Not only are they sprayed with potential cancer causing chemicals but the food supply is essentially owned by a few companies, one is Monsanto, who are not very liked. The reason a few companies owning the entire food supply is dangerous is because they would have immense power, they can control prices, and what we eat.
3. Physical Activity: It’s hard and nobody wants to do it, but physical activity has proven to increase your life expectancy even if you’re overweight. It doesn’t even have to be a high intensity workout, a daily walk could add seven years to your life.
4. Sleep: Everyone knows a good nights sleep is important but did you know that too much sleep it’s just as detrimental as too little sleep? According to a study where 21,000 twins were followed for 22 years they found people who slept less than 7 hours a night or more than 8 hours a night had an increased risk of death by 17% to 24%. The study also indicated that sleep medications increased the risk of death by about 33%. The ideal sleep is between 7 and 8 hours.
5. Avoid Sugar: At this point everyone knows that sugar is bad for you. But do you know how bad? According to a 15 year study people who took 25% or more of their daily calories in sugar were more than 2x as likely to die from heart disease, regardless of age, activity level, body mass or sex. To put it in perspective, if you had 1 can of Soda a day that would put all women and most men over the 25% of their daily calories coming from sugar. Sugar is the biggest problem society faces today.
6. Don’t Smoke: There’s a reason on every medical questionnaire they ask if you smoke. To be blunt, it’s one of the stupidest things a human being can do. Smoking increases your risk for cancer, diabetes, infection, wrinkles, infertility, erectile dysfunction and osteoporosis. In addition it dulls the mind, and vision. If that doesn’t put it in perspective, this should; the life expectancy of a smoker is at least 10 years less than a non-smoker.
7. Exercise the Brain: Longevity isn’t just about living. It’s about living and being aware of what is going on. It’s important to keep the brain sharp, not only for productivity purposes but to prevent diseases such as dementia. It’s been proven that if you do mental activity (thinking) you decrease your risk of dementia and the effects of dementia.
8. Vitamin D: The sunshine Vitamin is incredibly important. Over 1 billion people worldwide are Vitamin D deficient and its been described as a global health problem and an epidemic. Vitamin D is a steroid with hormone like activity, it regulates over 200 genes. Vitamin D Deficiency can result in obesity, diabetes, hypertension, depression, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, osteoporosis and neuro-degenerative diseases.
9. Diet: Slightly different than food, the particular diet you choose is important. We’ve been taught for years the incorrect “balanced diet” however; we still don’t have a diet that stands out above the rest. There are new diets like the Ketogenic diet and the Paleo diet. The Ketogenic diet claims to fight cancer and treat epilepsy. The Paleo diet might have beneficial effects on diabetes and the cardiovascular system.
10. Avoid Sitting: It’s been suggested that sitting is the new smoking and it has been proven that there is a steadily increase in risk of mortality across higher levels of sitting time. It’s also been proven that people who admitted to sitting for the majority of their day and a poorer long term prognosis than those who spent less time sitting. There has been reported to be a 50% percent increase of death from any cause. There is also a 125% increase of death associated with heart attack or cardiovascular disease.
11. The Kitchen: There are some hidden dangers in the kitchen. A lot of plastics come from China and there is some question as to if BPA plastics are even safe. A lot of people cook with Teflon pans which uses PFOA in the manufacturing process. There are rumors that PFOA might cause cancer. There is also the risk of Teflon poisoning when cooking with Teflon. At the end of the day we just aren’t sure if Teflon is safe and considering it takes two decades for the body to break it down, avoid using it.
12. Beauty Products: Many people today are using harmful products which contain chemicals that our skin absorbs. There are studies about the safety of cologne and perfume use as well as a potential link to autism. Not only are the chemicals listed in the perfume and cologne dangerous but there are a lot of chemicals that are being found that are not even listed on the label. These risks are not only limited to scented products but the products we use to clean our skin like soaps and shampoos also contain questionable chemicals. Some of the chemicals in soap and shampoo have even been linked to cancer. If that’s not enough to convince you according the the FDA it’s been proven that anti-bacterial soaps do more harm than good, as bacteria can be healthy for you.
13. Cleaning Products: The majority of people know that the chemicals that are sprayed outside to kill weeds or ant’s are extremely poisonous but often overlooked is the dangers of chemicals we use indoors. Household cleaners have been associated with allergic and respiratory diseases in children, hazards to pets and children, and rhinitis in children. Household cleaners also contain a host of potential cancer causing carcinogens or poisons.
We Suggest: Ditch all commercial sold household cleaners. There are natural cleaners that do an even better job. Purchase these alternatives to commercial cleaners: baking soda, white vinegar, tea tree oil and lemon.