Wednesday, March 28, 2007

AGING GRACEFULLY …. to 100 and beyond !


I know, I know, there are days you can hardly make it out of bed and here I am writing about living to be over 100 !! But, wouldn’t it be neat if we could do that...and do it gracefully.

A few years back I heard a wonderful interview with two doctors who had conducted a study of aging. They had made a five year study of 40 seniors who had arrived at the age of 100. These people were active, mentally alert, living on their own and able to care for themselves. They all came from the United States but were from widely varied economic backgrounds.

The doctors made an extensive documentation of : daily habits, lifestyles, ethnicity, weight, eating preferences, race and genetic backgrounds, as well as spiritual and religious leanings.

At the end of the five years these two doctors did a comparative study of their findings and came up with some fascinating conclusions. They found that it mattered little what the people ate or if they were prone to exercise…although they did point out that all their participants were moderate in these areas.

The exciting thing about their study is that ALL of the 40 people had four things in common and, remember, these were all people who are active and alert at the age of 100.

The four areas of commonality are:
1. A sense of humor.
2. A positive outlook on life.
3. The ability to bear loss.
4. A total dedication to something outside of their daily life.

The show that I listened to also included interviews. One lady had just come through the grief of losing a daughter in her 70’s and she was proving that #3 was possible. #4 was especially interesting because there were many variations on this. Quite a few were dedicated to a church or religious organization...but there were others, too. One man worked with retarded children and a few of the women helped in charitable organizations. The main thrust of #4 was to get the person away from their own problems by concentrating on others.

All in all I found this to be a very uplifting study. I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m going to try to practice it in my daily life.

14 Comments:

Blogger Anvilcloud said...

I think you'll live to be 200 then.

5:21 PM  
Blogger KGMom said...

I completely agree with the 4 items that people living to 100 shared.
For kicks, I did an online test to predict my longevity--according to that I will live to 91.
I'll keep my chin up.

5:50 PM  
Blogger truth said...

I think that is wonderful evidence of living a full life!

10:59 PM  
Anonymous claude said...

I am such a sissy! I don't want to age gracefully! I want to age painlessly ;)

12:03 AM  
Blogger Pam said...

I had always planned on living to 100, and even now, dealing with illness...I still do! I agree whole heartedly with the list.

6:14 AM  
Anonymous John said...

I agree with that list, although I am more likely to grow old 'disgracefully'. ;-)

6:42 AM  
Blogger Thailand Gal said...

I'm not sure. Honestly? I think 100 years is too long. I want to move on to the next adventure when I'm done here.

Those who want to live that long most likely will. On some level, we choose. Not saying I know what level or where to find it... but we choose.

:)


Peace,


~Chani

10:22 AM  
Blogger Chancy said...

I scored 3 out of 4 on the traits.
And I only have 23 more years to go to make it to 100 :)

10:24 AM  
Anonymous Terri said...

Upon very recently turning 60, I found it wasn't the actual "age" that bothered me in the least. It was the possible less amount of time in front of me. So yes...I'd love to be here to celebrate a triple digit birthday!
I have to agree totally with the study. By incorporating those four things into one's life, it reduces stress and it's easy to see it would all contribute to longevity. Here's to turning 100, I say! (gee, so that means I'd be around for 40 more years....I could handle that...lol)

3:22 PM  
Blogger Cathy said...

Oh boy - I've got to get busy. You've got it made. I'll be playing catch-up :0)

5:19 PM  
Blogger Laurie said...

What a wonderful post. Such good information. Thank you.

2:53 PM  
Blogger Cazzie!!! said...

I agree with the points they found in their study. I am increasingly seeing 100 year old plus people coming into hospital for some reason or another and I always ask them what their secret to longevity is. Some of them say a nip of brandy at night, some say no smoking and no alcohol, some say the daily walk they take around town, some say their love of giving to others....all the reasons thay give seem valid, like ritualistic in a way.
All of them were jovial and had no qualms telling people what they think. That is the life :)

5:08 PM  
Blogger Suzy said...

Excellent post.

My friend's grandmother lived to be 103.In her nineties she was still delivering meals on wheels. Every 4th of July she was out marching with a neighborhood "ragtag band." Just a lovely person. Positive outlook? Oh yes.

I guess, I don't even mind if I don't live to past 100, but I'd like to nurture those 4 things in my life all the way along.

(My husband's grandmother just died at 94.)

7:41 PM  
Blogger kenju said...

That's all good advice for living well and longer. Have you read about Olive Riley? She's 107. Her blog is on my blogroll - "The Life of Riley".

9:14 PM  

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