Most people that live to 100 do some in pretty good shape. It’s not like they spend those 20 whole years between 80 and 100 in hospital, taking tons of medication, or in a nursing home.
No. If you live to 100, chances are you’re going to be a pretty healthy old age pensioner – most centenarians don’t get age-related diseases (so heart disease, diabetes or cancer) right up until the end of their long lives, if at all. And scientists reckon this is due to a mix of good genes, and good behaviour…
As one ageing expert told The Washington Post:
“Something is going on that has protected them from the bad stuff that causes problems for other people earlier in life.”
Now we all secretly want to live forever, andhere are five cluesthat suggest you’re going to be one of the lucky ones:
1. You don’t drink, smoke or eat high-fat foods.
While this one is fairly obvious, it’s worth pointing out that so called ‘risky behaviours’ – such as excessive drinking, smoking and indulging in a high-fat diet – will shave years off your life, even if you have the genetic potential to live way past 100.
(Obviously, you have to weigh up quality of life vs quantity. Living to aged 100 might not be worth it if you can’t eat pizza the whole time…)
2. You walk fast.
This is one to remember when you reach those Autumn and Winter months of your life. The faster an over-65 walks, the longer they’re likely to stay alive. And the same goes for how far they can walk. If an OAP can’t walk for at least a quarter of a mile, it’s highly unlikely that they’ll be alive in six years time. Sorry, moon-man. You don’t look that sprightly…
3. You’ve got a young mum.
If your mum had you when she was under the age of 25, you’re twice as likely to live to 100 than somebody born to an older mother. Ovaries pump out the best eggs they have first, so offspring born to young mothers are typically healthier.
Ironically, if you are yourself an older mum, you’re four times more likely to liveto 100. Scientists believe that the ability to have children past the age of 40 shows that a woman is ageing slowly.
So, basically if you have a mum who had you young, wait till you’re old to have kids. That way, you’ll probably live forever…
4. You were a healthy weight as a teenager.
If you were obese as a teen, your chances of developing type 2 diabetes later in life is a whole lot higher than those healthy-weighted adolescents.
And you don’t see a whole lot of old people with type 2 diabetes…