What's the secret to a longer, healther life? If you were offered the chance to live an extra five, ten or more years, and remain healthy and active, wouldn’t you take it? The great news is you have that opportunity – and you don’t have to overhaul your entire life to do it. The secret to living longer and better can be found in the simple things you do every day, like the foods you eat, the company you keep, and your overall outlook on life.
Residents living in the original Blue Zones areas share common principles called Power 9®—these are healthy lifestyle habits that help them live longer, healthier, happier lives.
Discover the Fountain of Youth
It all started when a team of researchers and scientists set out on a seven-year quest to uncover the secret to leading longer, healthier, and happier lives. They discovered five places in the world, called Blue Zones® areas, where people enjoy active lives with less illness well into their golden years. Although each Blue Zones area has its own recipe for living longer, there are nine common ingredients that the people living in these communities share, which all contribute to their well-being. These nine powerful, but simple lifestyle behaviors focus on moving naturally, eating wisely, knowing your purpose, and belonging to a social community. They are the Power 9® Principles:
1. Move Naturally (be active without having to think about it)
2. Know Your Purpose
3. Down Shift (slow down daily, rest, take vacation)
4. 80% Rule (stop eating when you are 80 percent full)
5. Plant Slant (eat more veggies, less meat and processed foods)
6. Wine @ Five (one alcoholic beverage per day)
7. Right Tribe (create a healthy social network)
8. Belong (be part of a spiritual community)
9. Family First (make loved ones a priority)
The Power 9: You, too, can boost your own well-being by applying the Power 9 Principles to your daily life. These are easy tips you can live by to help you get the most enjoyment out of life. The great news is, you don’t have to take on all nine of these lifestyle behaviors at once to enjoy their benefits. After all, improving your well-being is not about adding more to your “to do list”, or restricting yourself to “do this, not that”. It’s about simplifying and doing the little things that add more meaning to your life – like slowing down, spending time with the people you love, eating foods that give you energy, and doing activities you enjoy.
Test Your Smarts
By adopting the right lifestyle habits, you could add at least ten years to your life and suffer from less chronic illnesses.
The correct answer is:
a. True. Scientific studies suggest that only about 25 percent of how long you will live is dictated by your genes. The other 75 percent is determined by your lifestyle and the everyday choices you make. The small steps you take every day to improve your well-being can make a big difference in the way you feel now and down the road.
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