A few weeks ago, I was having brunch with some girlfriends I’ve known for a very very long time. At some point, we all exposed our worst fears and they were oddly similar. These concerns had been wearing on each of us for some time and just happened to come to the surface.
Basically it all boiled down to the fact that we are all so concerned about having something wrong with us that would end up with us… well you know. Each of our concerns were uniquely different, but it was oddly comforting to know that I wasn’t alone with my worry. The group of us are all moms and we are all, seemingly, healthy.
This really got me thinking about how much my thoughts about mortality have changed since having kids. I mean, I had a healthy fear prior to having my two little Rinos, but it really kicked into high gear the moment I knew I was pregnant with my first and I think it’s grown more and more since. Super uplifting brunch right? LOL. I love those girls. Everyone needs people they feel comfortable being completely open and honest with. Feeling “safe” enough to be that open is a rare blessing that I am very grateful for.
After that brunch, I started researching ways to live longer. By now, we all know that eating more fruits and veggies and less meat, getting more sleep, exercising daily, and wearing sunscreen are all the typical things we think about when it comes to being “healthy” and can prolong our lives. But there are a few more things you can do to help us all have more birthdays:
- Watch less than two hours of TV a day. Apparently, each additional hour of TV can increase your overall risk of dying by 11% and dying from heart disease by 18%.
- Floss Daily. Get rid of that bacteria that can cause heart disease or a stroke.
- Meditate. Meditating has been shown to boost the immune system and reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Too much cortisol can cause various heart-related conditions.
- Take a multi. Just make sure your multi has vitamin D, calcium, magnesium, and folic acid. Think of this like health insurance for imperfect diets.
- Laugh more. Laughing regularly can help lower blood pressure, increase vascular flow, and boost to your immune system. It also releases endorphins in the brain which can improve your mood.
- Ditch your emotional baggage. Talk it out with someone or get creative to get rid of the pain. Any amount of depression is really hard on our bodies.
- Have sex, regularly. It’s been proven that when done three times a week it can lower blood pressure, improve your sleep, boost your immunity, and protect your heart.
- Nurture your support group. Loneliness can cause inflammation and depression.
- Have faith in something, anything. I’m totally not telling you to convert to Catholicism or to become a religious person at all. But having faith in anything can give you a positive outlook, hope, an acceptance of life and death, forgiveness, higher self-esteem, and inner peace.
- Make it a habit. Once you get into your life extending groove, make it a habit and this can boost your immune system.
See, you probably already do at least 1/2 of these things without even know they have life extending benefits. Good for you!!
PS – I’m absolutely not a doctor and cannot guarantee anything. Take in all this information the same way you would with a girlfriend over coffee. This information was glean through research from various websites including: worldlifeexpectancy.com, nytimes.com, usatoday.com, healthmd.com, bewholebewell.com.