Life consists of making a lot of choices. We make many of them every day and some have a larger impact on the rest of our lives more than others. Making decisions will impact how long you live, and making the right choices will help you live longer. Not making those wise choices will – you know – shorten your life.
Smoking is one of the leading causes of death. The CDC reports that one out of every five deaths is caused by smoking – and some from secondhand smoke. Tobacco use of any kind – particularly smoking – weakens the immune system and opens the way for many potentially fatal diseases to get started. Those diseases include cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes, COPD, diabetes, and many more. If you smoke, make the right choice about tobacco. It could add 10 years to your lifespan – when you also add the other healthy choices.
Regular exercise is usually given as a tip to living longer. That’s because it is that important. Staying at a healthy weight by eating right (limiting unhealthy foods) and exercising regularly reduces your risk of several serious health problems, including heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, and even some cancers. Staying at a healthy weight has added benefits of better sleep, and it can increase fertility in women. When exercising, aim for 30 minutes a day and 150 minutes per week.
Reduce Your Sugar Intake
Reducing your sugar intake makes it easier to maintain a healthy weight and also helps to prevent diabetes. Eat more vegetables and fruits and avoid snacking on sweets throughout the day. Watch out for sugar in sodas (9 teaspoons per can!), fruit juices, and specialty coffees.
Some products make identifying sugar difficult. The biggest problem comes from added sugars, which are added to make the product even sweeter. Too much sugar in your diet can result in tooth decay, decreased energy (after a spike), brain fog, weight gain, irritability, promotes inflammation, skin problems and aging, joint pain, and more.
Get More Sleep
Many Americans are sleep-deprived. They often get less sleep than the recommended amount. Sleep is beneficial because it enables your body to regenerate and heal while resting. It cleans out old and dead cells and recharges ones that need more energy. Sufficient sleep will enable you to focus better, think faster and make better decisions, have better mood control, and improved memory. Choosing to get more sleep will also help reduce stress and increase your longevity. Taking a nap during the day can also benefit by recharging and sharpening your focus.
Get More Sunlight
Getting outside more often will help a lot of Americans. Many are deficient of this vitamin and it is affecting their health. Oftentimes, people do not connect the symptoms of insufficient vitamin D to the problem. When you do not have enough of this vitamin, symptoms may include fatigue, weakness in your muscles, muscle cramps, depression, pain in your bones and joints, and headaches.
If you do not have enough vitamin D in your body, there is a simple and free solution. In most cases, 10 to 15 minutes in the sun will give you all you need. You could also take vitamin D3 supplements to get the same benefit.
Adding any or all of these benefits to ensure you live longer requires making the right choices. Something needs to be given up to gain something far better – a longer life.