“If I knew I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself.” -Mickey Mantle
10) Smoking – My dad smoked two packs of camel cigarettes per day and died when he was 46. Enough said.
9) Alcohol – Although we’ve heard for years that moderate drinking is good for our hearts, several recent studies have questioned that long-held belief. And earlier this year, the World Health Organization issued a dire warning about cancer and alcohol. No amount of alcohol is safe, the report said.
So, if any alcohol raises our cancer risk, and if it might not offer a real benefit to our hearts, should we be drinking at all? Your choice but it seems obvious.
8) Irregular Sleep – Americans currently average 6.8 hours of sleep at night, down more than an hour from 1942. Medical studies have related a lack of sleep to health problems and cognitive impairment. Therefore, experts typically recommend seven to nine hours sleep for adults.
7) Not Eating 3 meals per day – Eating three meals a day with healthy snacks in-between prevents overeating in a single meal and secures more energy throughout the day. Skipping meals also means missing essential nutrients the body needs to function. Your biggest meal should be breakfast and then it should taper down from there. The older we get the harder it is to overcome poor nutrition with exercise.
6) Inconsistent Exercise – The CDC says adults 18 to 64 should exercise moderately for two-and-a-half hours per week and engage in vigorous activity for an hour and 15 minutes. However, researchers found that adults only do 17 minutes of fitness activities per day. You know the old saying, “move it or lose it”.
5) Skipping Breakfast – Writing in the American Heart Association journal Circulation, researchers from Columbia University said both meal timing and frequency are linked to risk factors for a variety of conditions including heart disease, strokes, high blood pressure, blood glucose levels, obesity, and reduced insulin sensitivity.
The researchers reviewed other current scientific studies concerning breakfast and heart disease and found that those who eat breakfast daily are less likely to have high cholesterol and blood pressure, while those who skip breakfast and instead snack and graze throughout the day are more likely to be obese, have poor nutrition, or be diagnosed with diabetes. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
4) Not getting 9-11 servings of Fruit and Vegetables per day – Fruits and vegetables provide health benefits and are important for the prevention of illnesses. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends filling half of your plate with fruits and vegetables at each meal. Fruits and vegetables contain a variety of nutrients including vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Eating the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables each day can reduce the risk of chronic diseases. It is estimated that less than 20% of the US population eats the recommended servings of fruits and vegetables each day.
3) Overeating – What used to feed a family of six now feeds a family of four. Overeating actually reduces the body’s ability to absorb nutrients. Chronic overeating causes deterioration of the digestive system as well as failure of the overall body. For females, this results in the deterioration of reproductive system and the destruction of moon cycles. For men, overeating causes a reduction of libido and causes chronic fatigue.
Overeating also causes the deterioration of the digestive system and an increase in toxic build up in one’s body. Instant foods, alcohol, salt, sweet, spicy, and oily foods reduce the digestive ability of one’s body and deteriorates the functioning of all other major organs. This results in toxic build up in one’s body, resulting in weight gain and high blood pressure, narrowing of blood vessels, diabetes and cancer.
2) Dehydration – Water is your body’s principal chemical component and makes up about 60 percent of your body weight. Every system in your body depends on water. For example, water flushes toxins out of vital organs, carries nutrients to your cells, and provides a moist environment for ear, nose and throat tissues.
Lack of water can lead to dehydration, a condition that occurs when you don’t have enough water in your body to carry out normal functions. Even mild dehydration can drain your energy and make you tired. A good rule of thumb is to drink eight 8 ounces glasses of water per day.
1) Negativity – Behavioral experts agree the more you are upset, stressed and angry, the shorter your life will be. Negativity breeds emotional and mental stress which leads to eventual demise. Statistics show that negative people not only die sooner but they have a negative impact on the people around them. The more negativity you allow into your life the shorter your days will be. It’s your choice.