Originally published November 19 2014
Five rules for living a long, healthy life
by Daniel Barker
(NaturalNews) There's nothing complicated about living to a ripe old age with few health problems. The keys to longevity are clear and simple -- all you have to do is follow five basic rules:
If it seems as if you've heard all these tips before, you're undoubtedly right. But a 35-year medical study of 2,500 Welshmen has proven conclusively that adhering to these five guidelines will dramatically improve your overall health, making you live longer and be less susceptible to the onset of diseases common in aging people.
- Don't smoke
- Drink in moderation
- Eat healthy
- Exercise daily
- Keep your weight down
In 1979, researchers from the Cardiff School of Medicine launched the long-term study, in which 2,500 Welsh males between the ages of 45 and 59 agreed to participate by allowing the researchers to study them for the rest of their lives.
They were given recommendations for staying healthy and were then monitored periodically over the next 35 years, with researchers keeping track of their diets, exercise regimens and lifestyle choices.
The results of the study are stunning. Only 25 of the original participants managed to stick to the regime throughout the course of the study, but those who did cut the risk of developing diabetes by 70 percent; heart attacks, dementia and stroke by 60 percent; and cancer by 40 percent.
For those who did not follow the guidelines, there was no health benefit at all.
The study proves beyond any doubt that these simple rules can add years to one's life, while staving off the onset of many diseases, including dementia.
Lead researcher Peter Elwood reported:
Thirty years ago only 30 men in our study followed all five of our recommended healthy steps. The men who, despite living healthily, developed a disease did so at a much older age than the men neglectful of their lifestyle.
The development of heart disease was delayed by up to six years and it was around an additional 12 years before dementia took its grip. It shows that following a healthy lifestyle staves off disease and premature death. We must wake up to the preventive power of living a healthy life.
Although many may not find the results surprising, the study strongly reinforces what we've known all along -- that healthy lifestyle choices really do matter.
The costs associated with obesity, smoking and alcoholism are staggering. In Britain alone, the estimated cost of obesity to the national health system is more than $7.8 billion per year; alcohol-related diseases cost $5.5 billion, and smoking costs $4.7 billion.
The good news is that it's never too late to begin leading a healthy lifestyle. And the guidelines for doing so truly are simple.
All it takes is the realization that, with the determination to make the required changes in one's lifestyle, these five rules actually do work. It's not so difficult to begin eating better, walk a couple of miles a day, stop smoking and keep the drinking to a minimum. Millions of people have made these changes, and so can you.
And the benefits are not limited to adding a few years to your life. If you can adhere to these basic guidelines, you will feel better both physically and mentally, you will look better and you will more fully enjoy every single year of the rest of your life.
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