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Research Reveals How to Add 14 Years to Your Life -A Galaxy Classic

Exercise The proverbial “fountain of youth”, may not exist, but lifestyle changes can do the same thing a study by Cambridge University shows. Some would give millions, or whatever they had, to buy an extra 14 years of life, but according to the latest research, it’s just four relatively simple behavior adjustments that combined could add well over a decade to your life expectancy. 

The research, headed by Dr. Kay-Tee Khaw at Cambridge's Institute of Public Health, found that those who 1) exercised regularly, 2) ate five portions of fruit and vegetables a day, 3) didn't smoke, and 4) did not drink excessively, will on average live 14 years longer than those who do not follow these behaviors.

While there has always been plenty of evidence about the impact on health and life expectancy, very little research has been conducted on the combined effect of living all of these healthy behaviors. Fourteen years is a huge difference. The study's results are particularly important given the aging population of many of the world’s nations. All of these factors are achievable lifestyle changes, which can improve quality of life for people of any age.

The study, titled Combined Impact of Health Behaviors and Mortality in Men and Women: The EPIC-Norfolk Prospective Population Study published by the Public Library of Science's journal PLoS Medicine included 20,000 men and women aged 45-79 took part in the study. The participants scored between 0 and 4 depending on which behaviors they exhibited.

A point was awarded for not smoking, for moderate alcohol intake, a level of Vitamin C in the blood consistent with eating five portions of fruit and vegetables a day, and not being physically inactive. Physical inactivity was defined as having a sedentary job and not taking any form of exercise in leisure time. Deaths were then recorded in the subject group till 2006.

After taking account of the influence of age, the researchers found that, over the course of 11 years, those who had a score of zero were four times more likely to die than those with a score of four, while those scoring zero had the same risk of dying as those who were 14 years older than them. These findings were independent of social class or Body Mass Index.

This research echoes the sentiments of the popular book The Culprit & The Cure, written by one of the nation’s leading health experts, Dr. Steven G. Aldana. His book concisely outlines how lifestyle is the single largest culprit behind America’s poor health, and how transforming that lifestyle is the only real cure. According to Aldana, the chronic diseases that many live with today are largely preventable. He notes, "approximately 40% of all cancers are caused by the typical American diet, lack of physical activity and obesity, and that cancer is mostly a preventable disease." And, "Chronic diseases are among the most common and costly health problems to treat, but they are also among the most preventable."

Posted by Rebecca Sato

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I love how many of us know this but yet still fail to commit to a change to a healthy lifestyle. I've heard it all and experienced much of it myself. Great article and for those of you who care about your nutrition, feel free to use me as a bridge into that world!

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Anyone who's ever been a 14-year-old boy knows what the expression 'Fountain of Youth' REALLY means.

I do not see any evidence that each of the 4 factors where differentiated between.

Alcohol is toxic in any quantity, sweet fruits such as grapes have high amounts of suger, which together with alcohol are bad for you.

People that smoke are often in stressful environments, and those who do not smoke, often do not need to smoke, as they were lucky enough to be born in a less stressful society.

The experiment does not take into account that those who smoke, may actually have died earlier as a result of extreme stress. For instance, if you are in a war-zone, and you take something to calm you down, you are less likely to get your head blown off in a fit of rage.

Much like road-rage. People who are in road-rage cultures, and who do not smoke, could easily have a higher incidence of road-rage. You cannot test this, because the notion of wether one lives in such a culture or not, is too subjective to measure.

Those who are not in stressful environments do not smoke.

Smoking is more likely to be a symptom, and not a cause, as there are plenty of people who smoke to extreme old age. If it were causal, then this would not happen. But it does. There is no differentiation in the article between cause (science) and correlation (statistics).

How can the experiment show the results of what causes lack of exercise for example?

If you eat sugery fruits and drink alcohol, you will be obese, so the exercise you can do is directly effected by what type of food you take in.

If you are wealthy you can often afford not to work yourself to the bone, you can afford time and a peaceful place to exercise. You can afford healthier food. You can afford to live in a stress-free environment. Especially if you are born into wealth and peace.

Its an informative article, but it asks more questions than it answers.

There is no way to measure the effects of living in extreme stress and not smoking. People who are in extreme stress will smoke.

i cant understand how the health community gets away with putting the burden of stopping smoking on the patient. there should be a place you go to quit staffed by doctors. they give you a metric buttload of sedatives for a week and no nicotine crutches of any kind. after that period of time most people can stay smoke free. perhaps a few more days of observation and its done. tobacco is too powerfull for most people to conquer by themselves.

It is mostly general knowledge. The tendency to consider only the biological body and ignoring the role the mind cum brain plays in having an extended life, appears to lack depth. The technique of yoga and Meditation can do wonders as it helps quieten the mind and treat each action duly separated and concentrated in action at a time. Living 100% in the present is another short way of summarizing the prescription.

the very useful information,thank you ^^

One of the most effective ways to prolong your life is to quit smoking!

Quitting smoking is the best thing to do for your health.

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