Friday, September 11, 2009

How to Live to be over 100

Today I had a revelation. I was walking through the grocery store when I noticed a couple of old ladies doing their shopping. The first lady must have been in her 70s and the other her 80s.

"No, not that one. Get the big pack." The 80 year old said to her friend. After all, who wants a 12 pack of beer when you can get a 30 pack. As I walked away the 70 year old was putting the 30 pack in the cart while her older friend picked out the ice cream. Today, I discovered the secret of living a long life.

1) EAT WHAT YOU WANT: Sure, you can eat all the right foods but that's no fun. "Gertrude Baines... lived to be the world's oldest person (115) on a steady diet of crispy bacon, fried chicken and ice cream." Maria de Jesus (115) also loved eating ice cream and quite enjoyed Portuguese pudding. Mitoyo Kawate (114) was know for her love of custard. Mrs. Beaterman, the lady who lived in my basement as a kid (it was an apartment) lived to be 103, her favorite food, peppermints. I can still remember eating ice cream with my great grandmother who lived to be 100. Jeanne Calment lived to be 122 eating two pounds of chocolate a week. And why not, chocolate is delicious. Sarah DeRemer Knauss née Clark (119) would agree listing eating chocolate turtles and potato chips as one of her passions. Hendrikje van Andel-Schipper (115) gave this advice for living a long life, "keep breathing and eat pickled herring." Susie Gibson ate at O'Charlies every week until she was 115. Sure, some really old people eat healthy and that's ok too. The key is, they enjoy what they eat. Eating shouldn't be stressful. Food should be enjoyed. If not than your doing it wrong.

2) KEEP ACTIVE: You don't have to exercise, you just have to keep moving. Clemet (122) took up fencing at 88 and rode her bike until she was 100. She was however "neither athletic, nor fanatical about her health." She just kept moving. The famous comedian George Burns who died at the age of 100 walked a mile a day. Hendrikje (115) was quoted as saying that along with eating pickled herring every day you "must remain active." Even at 114 Yone Minagawa was still dancing in her wheel chair. Keep moving.

3) BE POSSITIVE: Pessimist die young. Just ask one, they'll tell you. Emiliano Mercado del Toro (115) said that his secret to long life was his sense of humor. Camille Loiseau (114) "was known right to the end of her life for her humor and flirtatiousness." Geroge Burns (100) put it this way, "If you ask me what is the single most important key to longevity, I would have to say it’ s avoiding worry, stress, and tension. And if you didn’t ask me, I’d still have to say it. Worry, stress, and tension are not only unpleasant but can shorten your life. My attitude is, if something is beyond your control, there is no point worrying about it. And if you can do something about it, then there is still nothing to worry about. " So, smile, tell a joke and enjoy life.

4) WIN THE LOTTERY: Ok, not the state lottery. That kills most people. I'm talking about the genetic lottery. Let's face it. Most of you won't live to be 100 because it's just not in your genes. If everyone related to you died at 53 than you had better make the best of your short life. I will however be living to be well over 100 and I will be eating bacon and ice cream all the way there.


melanie said...

You've been reading Guinness Book again, haven't you?

I think the farmers who ate bacon and fried chicken normally did not live long lives. It was a hard life and they even looked old before their time. But if they did live a long life, I wonder if it was because of all the physical work they did. You don't normally see fat full-time farmers.

Helen Ann said...

I needed this today, Dan. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Great grandma lived to be 98, although she was less than a month away from 99, I believe. She enjoyed riding the carousel well into her 80s, and also enjoyed pecan pie. ,Grace

DanThoms said...

Yep, my other great grandma was almost 99 when she passed away. She lived on her own until her mid 90s. I still remember her riding that crazy ride at the fair when she was in her 80s. Mom threw up, great grandma laughed and laughed and laughed.

Melanie, the worlds oldest lady died yesterday so I started browsing the internet reading the bios of all the worlds oldest people. Mostly Wikipedia. I am a huge Guiness fan though.

Francy said...

I think its mostly genetics which doesn't bode well for me. Whatever.

Michael Joseph Sharp said...

love this

photogr said...

Keeping active does help with longevity. Sad part is the energy falls short too early.