How Can You Lower Your Risk of Premature Death
The gift of living a long and healthy life is not a right that everyone is given. It is not something we just “get”. Rather, it is something that we can earn through wise choices and actions that support good health over the course of our lives.
One of the most important factors in living a long and healthy life is how we manage stress. Stress has been shown to increase our risk of premature death. The results of a study published in 2012 showed that men who reported high levels of psychological stress had a shortened lifespan. Their risk of premature death from all causes, including heart disease was increased, as well their risk of dying from cancer.
Tips for Living a Longer Life with Less Stress
A person’s life expectancy depends on a variety of factors, including their choice of lifestyle. A study by the Social Security Administration found that white men who are non-smokers, who do not drink alcohol heavily, and who exercise regularly can expect an extra six years of life to their more sedentary peers. Since there is not much one can do about genetics, this quote from Woody Allen seems particularly appropriate: “I don’t want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve it by not dying.”
According to the study, of the people in the United States who live past 70 years old, more than half are able to do so without any health problems. This means that living a long and healthy life is possible for most people with careful planning and commitment.
In particular, the study identifies three activities that make for a long and healthy life: eating healthfully, getting adequate sleep, and being physically active. People who are physically active are likely to be more productive at work, which can translate into a longer life.
Why are People Getting Older Faster?
There are a few reasons why society is aging, but probably the most important is that the technological advances of recent decades have increased life expectancy. For example, new medicines have improved the treatment of serious diseases that once were fatal to large numbers of people. And the elimination of many types of workplace hazards and safety regulations have raised life expectancy.
For example, in the United States, between 1990 and 1997 the biggest increases in life expectancy were caused by improvements in cancer treatments (12 years), and heart disease (11 years). At the same time, increased longevity–often called an increase in “healthy longevity” — was caused by lower rates for certain chronic diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, and stroke.
On average we live longer. In 1990 people of 55-64 years old who died had a life expectancy of 22.9 years. By 1999 men in this age group were expected to live another 23.9 years, and women another 25.3 years.
The trends in increased life expectancy are often broken down into three periods: 1870 to 1900, 1900 to 1945, and 1945 on to the present (figure 1). Though the rate of increase slowed somewhat–and some important diseases were added–life expectancy continued to rise during each period. The highest real gains were made during the last of these periods, when there was an average increase of 2.5 years in life expectancy per decade.
Ending Life Like We Do – How Can You Help Those Who Are Dying?
Living a long, healthy life is hard work. It requires discipline and a strong commitment to well-being. We can help ourselves by eating right, getting enough exercise, attending to our health and doing pretty much everything that we can to live longer and healthier lives. But what happens when we are older, sick and need help? The reality is that most of us end our lives in one of two ways. We die in a nursing home or we die at home with the help of hospice.
There is a third option that many of us choose. We commit suicide.
We live in a country where almost any kind of assistance for the elderly is denied. Most people who are frail and elderly are not taken care of properly. They are simply sent from the hospital to a nursing home when it becomes apparent that they can no longer take care of themselves and that they need assistance with their daily needs.
People with cancer, heart disease, dementia and other illnesses are often given the wrong kind of help and are simply discharged from the hospital to die alone in their own homes.
Conclusion: Get Elated in Life But Stay Bullish at the same Time!
As life gets more difficult and stressful, we need to make sure that we are emotionally and physically prepared for what lies ahead. Seek support in your community as well as access to medical care. Stay active and optimistic. Treat yourself with kindness and compassion. Do not be afraid to ask for help or assistance when you need it, and remember also to give help when you can to others. The most precious gift we can leave behind for our loved ones is the memory of a happy and fulfilled life.
At the same time, you need to be working toward financial security and stability. If you are living paycheck to paycheck, it is likely that your financial security is already in jeopardy. This can come in the form of a job loss or an unexpected illness which requires expensive medications or treatments. It can also come as an injury that keeps you out of work for a period of time, causing your income to disappear entirely.
In this economy, everyone needs to be in control of their finances. Part of being in control is planning for the future.
Do not focus solely on one aspect of your life — think about it holistically. If you are happy, healthy and feeling fulfilled in terms of your family and spiritual life, you will have a much greater chance at financial stability and security.