Over the centuries, people have always been trying various methods, even the least pleasant ones, so they can get to live longer.
Some people have been eating such things as bee pollen, rattlesnakes, and caterpillar fungus, or drinking tea mushroom extract (mercury) and even the first milk of new mothers (colostrums).
Nowadays, we have more knowledge about the strategies that can really work.
1. Starve Yourself
In 1934, researchers discovered that the lab rats that were fed near-starvation diets lived much longer than what they expected.
In 1986, this was confirmed following an experiment by R. Weindruch and others where they used the same diet on mice.
After that, almost all tested animals have given the same result. Being provided the necessary nutrients, they could live longer on a diet that starves them but keeps them alive.
Now humans are trying the starvation method for themselves. One example is the CR Society, which is a group of individuals who are committed to prolonging their lives through a reduced calorie diet.
Well, those who follow this diet do exhibit many anti-aging effects, such as lower blood pressure and reduced insulin resistance. Moreover, the Okinawans, one of the longest-lived populations in the world, follow a similar diet as part of their culture. This calorie restriction practice is known as hara hachi bu and consists of eating only about 1200 calories per day and to stop eating before they’re full.
2. Learn a Language
A well-functioning brain is a major factor to a long and happy life.
As your brain shows the effects of aging, it becomes hard to care for your well-being and make good decisions about your health.
As was shown in several studies, the skill of speaking two or more languages restricts the onset of Alzheimer’s and dementia, the two most common deadly diseases of old age. In a 200 patients-study by researchers from the Rotman Research Institute in Toronto, it was found that, in some cases, these diseases were delayed for up to 5 years.
Bilingualism establishes a larger brain reserve and can enable the brain to function normally regardless of damage.
Moreover, these benefits were also shown in individuals who had learned a new language as adults. It’s never too late!
3. Live on a Mountain
Living on a mountain can simply make you live longer.
In fact, 7 out of 10 long-lived communities in the US are living in high-country Colorado countries, meanwhile, in the small Sardinian town of Ovodda, many men and women reach 100 years old.
It can be the fresh and clean air of the mountain or the uphill walks which give you a good workout every time you go outside.
Whatever the reason, moving to the mountains means adding some extra years to your life, as well as serenity and wonderful landscapes.
4. Get Religion
Well, whatever god(s) you believe in, they seem to keep you on Earth a few years longer than our atheist fellows.
According to several studies, there is a strong and positive connection between good health and religious belief.
The National Institute for Healthcare Research held a meta-analysis of 42 independent studies conducted by Michael E. McCullough, and it was found that the rates of mortality were higher among the non-religious group.
Whether it’s due to divine intervention or to the better social support within religious communities, having a religion can make you live longer.
5. Edit Your Genes
Well, this one is not available yet. However, scientists at the Spanish National Cancer Research have succeeded to prolong the natural lifespan of mice through gene therapy by up to 24%!
The treatment was then carried out on adult mice to show that the younger the better, as younger mice could live longer than the older ones.
Recently, the scientists could modify mice embryo genes to give them a longer life. However, treating human beings in such a way is a little bit far from being judged as being ethical.
6. Get Rich
If you were thinking about carrying a simple life that’s free from consumerism, think again.
A long and healthy living is deeply associated with wealth all around the globe.
People living in poor countries tend to have a lower life expectancy because their government doesn’t have enough money to spend on health care. But also in rich countries, rich individuals live longer than those who are poor.
So you may want to consider finding more effective ways to get rich.
7. Work Hard and Be Stressed
According to the Longevity Project which included 1,500 children and accumulated 80 years of interesting information, the kids who were carefree and had a bright sense of humor lived shorter lives than those who were more serious and prudent.
When these serious kids became adults, they were more committed to their jobs, had safer lives, and got to live longer.
So now you know that all that kidding around is no good.
Also, people tend to be happy because they’re healthy and not the other way around.
8. Take Drugs (the right ones)
The endless longing for a long life and eternal youth has inspired the attempts of creating medications that are supposed to increase humans’ longevity.
In fact, there are drugs that prolong life in animals and perhaps would in humans as well.
One of these drugs is Rapamycin, which prolonged mice lifespan by up to 14% after being treated with this drug.
As for humans, rapamycin is particularly prescribed to organ transplant patients to assist prevention of rejecting new organs by suppressing the immune system, even though a suppressed immune system increases the risk of developing cancer.
Well, at least, the existence of this drug proves the possibility of increasing your life expectancy by taking a daily pill.
9. Grow New Body Parts
When people die, it’s often one specific vital part that failed them while the rest is still well-functioning.
So what about growing new organs and set them ready for use when your current ones fail you?
Replacing a defunct organ is no longer science fiction. Today’s technology can do it, with the advantage of growing the tissue from the patient’s own cells to ensure there’s no risk of rejection.
Doctors have been growing new skin for patients for years and have previously leveled to more complex organs like the heart and bladder.
The 3D printers now allow the use of computer imagery to create a cell-based structure that is a flawless copy and thus fit perfectly to the body.
However, the only thing you cannot grow is a new brain, as it would be more like a blank page because your original brain contains all your experiences and memories.
10. Do Good in the World
It’s not always about you! One of the best ways to help yourself is through helping others.
According to a review of over 30 longitudinal studies, volunteering can significantly expand your life, notably if you’re doing it out of purity and generosity.
Furthermore, being socially active and having lots of good friends around you, especially in old age, can also help you stay longer in this world.
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