Last updated on April 12, 2021
We should all learn from those who have lived long, happy lives. The secret to longevity really isn’t a secret, so we’ve compiled a list of 101 inspirations to help you boost your longevity and defy the aging process. No matter your age, there are life hack here that will work for you.
101 Life Inspirations And Life Hacks
1. Be mindful of your genetics. Knowing your risk factors based on your family history is a great idea, and you can manage your life based on those risks.
2. Take care of problems before they become big ones. Don’t wait to visit a doctor when something is really wrong. See your doctor regularly and stay on top of your health issues.
3. Maintain a healthy weight. This one is important, as you’ll decrease your risk for cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, kidney and liver problems, and all kinds of health issues.
4. Get your vaccines. Stay away from the flu, shingles, and other preventable diseases to live healthier and longer.
5. Know the warning signs for stroke and heart attack. As you get older, understand the warning signs of these potentially fatal issues, so you can seek help quickly if it happens to you or a loved one.
6. Avoid risks. Those who avoid risky behaviors are much more likely to see old age than those who take lots of chances, particularly with their health and safety.
7. Get a tetanus shot. Your immune system weakens as you age. Even a small injury can cause big problems without the proper shots.
8. Avoid chronic stress. Whether it is caring for a sick child, aging parent, or coping with trauma or mental illness, chronic stress significantly impacts our bodies over time, including shortening our lifespans. Find coping strategies and seek help to manage chronic stress.
9. Quit smoking. This single lifestyle choice will give you back years of your life. You know all the reasons why you should quit and living longer should be an important one.
10. Stay out of the sun. Taking care of your skin is important. Use sunscreen and avoid prolonged exposure to not only ensure healthy skin as you age but to lower your risk of skin and other types of cancers.
11. Wash your hands. Many diseases, particularly those that are fatal to the elderly, are preventable by simply washing your hands. Start the habit young, and it will carry you far in life.
12. Get regular health screenings. In addition to seeing a doctor regularly, be sure to get your scheduled screenings for colon, breast, and other types of cancers. Prevention and detection can help you live much longer.
13. Take care of your teeth. Those who neglect their teeth are more likely to die younger. An unhealthy mouth can lead to other, more significant health issues, include stroke and dementia as you age.
14. Use medications with caution. When a doctor prescribes medications that you need to be healthy, you should take them. But overusing over-the-counter and other drugs to manage acute or slight problems can reduce your lifespan. Watch these carefully.
15. Get plenty of Vitamin D. This important vitamin is essential for many of our body’s systems, including immunity and brain function. Those with Vitamin D deficiency are at higher risks for death from cancer, heart disease, and cognitive impairment later in life. Spending just 10 minutes outside in the sun is often enough to elevate your levels, and eating a well-balanced, healthy diet will help, too.
16. Ask for support when you are sick. If you are diagnosed with something serious, don’t go through it alone, ask for help and support, it makes a big difference.
17. Start healthy habits young but remember it’s never too late. No matter your age, it’s always a good time to change your habits to healthier ones. Your body will thank you, and you’ll extend your lifespan.
18. Eat Well. One of the most critical factors that determine your longevity is your diet. Eating a diet full of healthy fruits, vegetables, grains, and healthy fats have consistently been shown to boost health and promote longevity.
19. Eat less to maintain a healthy weight. Carrying around extra pounds promotes a whole host of other health problems, including diabetes, heart disease, dementia, and kidney problems. So, maintaining a healthy weight can help prevent many problems before they start.
20. Try fasting. Intermittent fasting promotes healthy glucose levels and increases immunity. Many religious and spiritual rituals use fasting for its spiritual cleansing properties, as well. Fasting every other day, for 2-4 days, or on other regular schedules has been shown to be beneficial for many people, increasing their lifespan.
21. Eat lots of seafood. A diet rich in fatty acids, found primarily in fish, is known to promote brain health and cardiovascular function. Eating a diet rich in these foods, or taking a supplement, can help you live longer and be healthier.
22. Watch your blood sugar. Raised glucose levels indicate an unhealthy lifestyle. Keep your blood sugar in check to avoid diabetes, heart disease, and other health problems that can decrease your lifespan.
23. Follow the Mediterranean diet. Those who eat foods from the Mediterranean region live longer than those from many other areas of the world. This diet, rich in fresh foods, fish, and olive oil, promotes lower incidences of cancer and heart disease while extending your life.
24. Try a ketogenic diet. Ketosis is when your body uses fats instead of glucose for energy. You can eat a ketogenic diet, which is low in carbohydrates, to promote ketosis. This type of diet promotes healthier brain function, reducing your risk for dementia and other cognition problems and helps you lose weight.
25. Don’t skip the chocolate. Cacao, which is the primary component in chocolate, improves lifespan and cognition. Dark chocolate has heart benefits, as well. Older men benefit more from a daily dose than women, but a small piece every day is a good thing for everyone.
26. A moderate amount of alcohol can be beneficial. Drinking small amounts of alcohol plays a role in reducing the risk of diabetes and heart disease. Moderate alcohol consumption increases your cell’s efficiency at absorbing glucose.
27. Eat blueberries. The polyphenols in blueberries can increase lifespan, which is why it is often included in lists of “super foods” and other foods that are packed with essential nutrients.
28. Eat other purple foods, too. These foods are all rich in polyphenols, as well. Think red wine, concord grapes, blackberries, currants, and purple cabbage and carrots. You’ll get the cardiovascular and cognitive benefits that can prolong your life.
29. Drink coffee. Drinking one cup of coffee can provide many benefits. It reduces your risk of diabetes and promotes both brain and heart health with its polyphenols and antioxidants. Be careful not to go overboard, as too much coffee can have adverse effects, though.
30. Enjoy fruits and veggies whole, not juiced. The sugars in juice elevate blood glucose levels while your body isn’t enjoying the benefits of the healthy fiber in whole foods. Skip the juicer and go straight for the real thing.
30. Skip the fatty dairy products. Cow’s milk can cause many problems, including breast, prostate, and ovarian cancers. Dairy products can raise cholesterol levels and increase your risk of heart disease. Those cultures that eschew dairy are among the healthiest in the world.
31. Take a cue from other cultures. There are many cultures around the world who are known for their long lifespans. Japan, Greece, and Singapore are among those. Look closely at the diets of these countries to discover a variety of whole foods, fresh vegetables and fruits, very little processed food, and small indulgences.
32. Eat slowly and enjoy each bite. Savoring your food allows you to enjoy it as well as recognize when you are full, so you can stop eating. Life should be all about savoring each moment, and this is especially true when you are enjoying good, healthy foods.
33. Enjoy a cup of tea. Both green and black tea have health benefits that make them worth sipping. Both are shown to improve cardiovascular function, and green tea’s antioxidants can protect your cognitive functions, too.
34. Skip the soda. Whether it’s diet or regular, soda consumption raises your risk for many problems, including high blood pressure, elevated blood sugars, diabetes, and heart disease. If you like carbonation, try sparkling water, but skip anything with added colors, sugar, or artificial flavors.
35. Enjoy Japanese dietary staples. The Japanese have more people over 100 than any other country in the world. Take your dietary cues from them by eating sweet potatoes, small amounts of fresh fish, a diet heavy in fresh vegetables, and turmeric, a powerful antioxidant.
36. Consider being a vegetarian, at least part-time. Vegetarians have a longer lifespan than their meat-eating counterparts. Their diets of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes promote healthier systems that lead to longer living.
37. Eat lutein for your eyes. If you are going to live longer, you better make sure you can enjoy your advanced years. Take care of your eyes with plenty of lutein, a carotenoid in dark, leafy greens, other vegetables, and eggs. Lutein and helps prevent macular degeneration and cataracts and has also been shown to prevent cognitive decline.
38. Enjoy spicy foods. When you eat spicy foods, such as peppers, your body produces endorphins. These reduce pain and inflammation, which can have positive benefits for your body. Including spicy foods regularity in your diet can have long-term benefits for your lifespan.
39. Drink plenty of water. Healthy kidneys and reduced risk of several kinds of cancer are all benefits of adequate hydration. Plus, a hydrated brain functions properly. Drinking plenty of water is a great habit to begin early and keep throughout your life.
40. Eat nuts. Nuts are high in protein, unsaturated fats, antioxidants, and vitamins. Need another reason? They taste good too. Walnuts are great for your cardiovascular health.
41. Walk. A lot. Walking has consistently been shown to improve overall health and well-being. People who continue to walk into their later years enjoy much more active lives and are stronger. Walking at a moderate to vigorous pace is a great way to stay in shape and protect your joints from damage.
42. Move your body. Being sedentary is not healthy for many reasons. Those who lead sedentary lives are more likely to suffer from health issues and die younger.
43. Do yoga. Yoga is a great activity for many reasons. It helps you to relax, keeps your muscles strong, improves your flexibility, and reduces anxiety.
44. Lift weights. Particularly in your younger years but even as you get older, resistance training and working out with weights will stave off bone loss and muscle atrophy. Women should especially consider weight training after menopause to help live longer, healthier lives.
45. Take the stairs. This simple habit can be adopted early and take you throughout your life. Regular physical activity, such as taking the stairs, burns fat and helps build strength.
46. Dance your heart out. Dancing is a great way to stay in shape, to improve your mental outlook, and to spend time with other people.
47. Work on your balance. Focusing on your balance throughout your life can help you stay strong, prevent falls, and prevent injury. Yoga and tai chi are good ways to improve balance and can be practiced throughout your life.
48. Stay away from rough sports. Football, boxing, and other contact sports can cause trauma to your body and brain that will shorten your life. Reduce your risk and live longer by avoiding these types of activities in favor of ones kinder to your body.
The Life You Live
49. Stay active. Betty White once said, “There’s no spare time, so I’m active all the time. I think that forces you to stay well. To be 90 and still be working — that’s what I wouldn’t have expected. I’m the luckiest broad on two feet.” Regardless of your age, find a purpose and keep at it.
50. Everything in moderation. This adage is true for many reasons.
51. Do what you love. “Anybody who has a great passion and can’t live without it, I think that helps you live. I think it keeps you well and happy and busy. It certainly has kept me busy,” said painter and academic Randolph Hokanson at 101.
52. Give back to society. When you are older and retired, finding ways to be useful and relevant is important. Consider volunteering in your community. It will keep you active and provide you with meaning.
53. Stay in school. Continuing your education beyond high school has been correlated with longer lifespans. Those who are educated tend to be healthier overall.
54. Keep learning. Even after you are done with school, keep learning. This will promote brain health and helps prevent dementia and other cognitive disorders. Whether it’s learning to paint, to cook, or just taking a class on a topic of interest, your brain will benefit from continued stimulation.
55. Find someone with whom to share it. Kirk Douglas, was 100 when he said, “I was lucky enough to find my soul mate 63 years ago, and I believe our wonderful marriage and our nightly ‘golden hour’ chats have helped me survive all things.” There is a strong correlation between long life and being happy with someone.
56. Sex is important. Not only does sex promote intimacy and a closer relationship, it can also protect your heart and improve your sleep. Sex twice or three times a week can greatly extend your lifespan.
57. Touch is important. Holding hands or touching the skin of your partner for just ten minutes each day helps lower your blood pressure and steady your heart rate.
58. Spend time with those you love. “People often ask me [the secret to my longevity] and I always answer the same thing: love life. Live a simple life, play with your kids, enjoy the things you have, spend time with good loyal friends.” At 101, David Rockefeller knew something about living a long life.
59. Make close friends and keep them. Social interaction is critical to longevity, and having a strong social network is important. Friends can offer you support, assist you when you need help, and promote healthy lifestyle choices when you engage in them together. Strong social ties help you manage stress. Studies find relationships help prevent heart disease, improve immunity, lower risks of dementia, reduce risks of dementia and prolong lifespan. Friendship is important at all stages of life, but particularly in the later years.
60. Make younger friends. When you are friends with people who are younger than you, their vitality can influence you. Having younger friends when you are elderly can have profound effects on mental health and cognition.
61. Get a pet. Pets lower blood pressure, provide you with a sense of purpose, and give you companionship. Pets force us to focus outside ourselves, which can be healthy for many, especially the elderly.
62. Keep your memory sharp. Working to improve your memory is important as you age. Learn memory techniques, repeat information to help restore it in your memory, and take notes when needed. All these will help keep your brain working well into your later years.
63. Get plenty of rest. Proper sleep is important to health in many ways, including cardiovascular and brain health. Get plenty of sleep, make sure you stick to a routine for rest, and don’t sacrifice sleep when you are young if you want to live a long, healthy life.
64. Don’t worry about the calendar. Your age doesn’t matter unless you decide it matters. Focus on building and maintaining healthy habits and a life that makes you happy, and it won’t matter what day or month or even year it is.
65. Read. Reading promotes longevity by keeping your brain active, teaching you new things, and promoting healthy habits when you stay abreast of news and health information. Readers outlive non- readers for many important reasons, so pick up a book, newspaper, or a magazine today.
66. Play games. Your brain craves novelty, and the more you can offer that when you are older, the longer you will live to enjoy life. Whether it’s doing crosswords, playing Sudoku, or other games, these activities provide needed cognitive stimulation to prevent Alzheimer’s and dementia.
67. Use the sauna. Regular use of a sauna has been shown to reduce risk of heart disease and increase lifespan. The Finnish are regular sauna users, and as a nation, their longevity is inspiring.
68. Turn off the TV. Time spent in front of the TV is time spent away from other, healthier activities. Those who sit and watch TV for long periods of time live shorter lives and have more health problems. A little TV is okay, but more than a few hours is too much sitting.
69. Sing in a group. People who sing in organized choirs enjoy many health benefits. Singing lowers stress, and choir members see similar benefits as yoga practitioners.
70. Embrace nature. Spending time outdoors is a great way to stay active. Being exposed to nature boosts mood, lowers blood pressure and heart rate, and lowers stress levels. Even living near green spaces can help you live longer but being outdoors is a real benefit.
71. Don’t retire early. When studying people who have lived long lives, researchers have noted that people who worked longer at satisfying jobs were more likely to live longer. Early retirement may not be the key to longevity after all. Satisfying work promotes life purpose, brings fulfillment and promotes life satisfaction.
72. Meditate. Meditation promotes mental well-being, reduces stress and pain, and can improve memory and cognition. Meditation is a daily practice you can learn at any stage of life.
73. Learn a new language. You don’t necessarily have to become fluent, but even learning a few words of a new language can have positive effects. The Alzheimer’s Foundation reports that it helps exercises the brain, prevent dementia and keeps the mind sharp and stimulated. Language learning is a great mental exercise, and it could promote interest in other new things, like travel or cooking.
74. Take more vacations. Those who are able to enjoy leisure time throughout their lives, in balance with work and family, live longer.
75. Move to a higher elevation. The lower oxygen levels at higher elevations have positive influences on your cardiovascular system. Those who live at higher elevations often live longer, so consider moving up.
76. Move abroad. Ex-pats enjoy many benefits when moving overseas, including the benefit of improved diet and access to recreation. Select a country whose life expectancy is longer, and you’ll reap many rewards.
77. Take naps. Regular, short naps can improve your heart health and promote healthy brain function. Aim for short naps of 30 minutes around midday to enjoy all the benefits.
78. Laugh. A lot. Laughter is a great way to lower your blood pressure and improve your mental outlook. Laughter helps lower stress, and has numerous proven benefits for mental, physical and emotional health. When you laugh with friends, you’ll enjoy added benefits of socialization, too.
79. Enjoy music. Listening to music boosts brain function and focus. Those who listen to music while they exercise tend to stick with the activity longer, giving them physical as well as mental benefits, too. Whether you select classical or contemporary, you’ll be prolonging your life.
80. Grow something. Planting a garden or having indoor houseplants gives you something to care for while promoting activity. Indoor plants help to purify your air, and an outdoor garden allows you to enjoy fresh air and sunshine.
81. Stay productive. Working hard doesn’t have to mean a shorter life. People who work hard actually tend to live longer because they feel more productive. Hard-working people tend to be happier and more fulfilled.
82. Keep your home safe. One of the simplest ways to live longer is to make sure your home is safe. Install detectors for smoke and carbon monoxide. Have your home tested for radon and lead. Take precautions to prevent household accidents, which are a leading cause of death.
Attitude And Mindset
83. If you think you are ageless, you will act and feel so. No matter your age, a little attitude can go a long way in life.
84. Practice gratitude for what you do have. Don’t mourn those things that are gone. By looking forward, not back, you promote longevity and happiness.
85. Be conscientious. Those who live the longest tend to be conscientious about most things in their life. While we might assume a more carefree approach might lead to longer life, those who are persistent and organized tend to actually live longer. They make healthier choices and are more careful, in general.
86. Count what matters. “Let us never know what old age is. Let us know the happiness time brings, not count the years.” ~ Ausonius.
87. Stay positive. Norman Lloyd said, at the age of 102, “I think the word that I might apply here is ‘attitude.’ You must be active, you must be positive, even if things don’t go the way you want them to. I think if you allow yourself to mope and feel sorry for yourself, it can take years off your life.”
88. Treat others with kindness. Gertrude Weaver, who lived to be 116 years old, attributed her many years to this, “Treat people right and be nice to other people the way you want them to be nice to you.”
89. Remember some wise words. Mark Twain once wrote, “Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”
88. Strike a balance between positivity and resilience. It’s great to be nice most of the time, but those who are overly optimistic may have trouble rebounding from setbacks. Getting over obstacles is just as important as a sunny outlook.
90. Remember all the things that are better with age. Wine, cheese, whiskey, jeans… Just remember no one wants a brand new cast iron skillet.
91. Embrace aging. Those who have a positive attitude about aging actually live longer than those who dread it or have other strong negative emotions about getting older.
92. “Aging is not lost youth but a new stage of opportunity and strength.” ~ Betty Friedan
93. With age comes confidence and wisdom. Sophia Loren once said, “There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.”
94. Believe in something. Whether it is religion or a personal spirituality, those who have strong beliefs are more likely to live longer than non-believers.
95. Look forward. “I suppose real old age begins when one looks backward rather than forward.” ~ Mary Sarton
96. Embrace challenges. To combat dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease, use your brain in new and challenging ways. Using self-discipline to focus your attention will help you stay alert and cognitively healthy longer.
97. Set personal or career goals and challenge yourself to meet them by a certain time. As you age, continue to reassess your goals in life and set new targets. This will develop cognitive habits that will benefit you well into your later years.
98. It’s a journey, not a destination. “I believe the second half of one’s life is meant to be better than the first half. The first half is finding out how you do it. And the second half is enjoying it.” ~ Frances Lear
99. Don’t give up. “Do not go gentle into that good night but rage, rage against the dying of the light.” ~ Dylan Thomas
100. Don’t be afraid to consider death. You are more likely to make healthier life choices when you think about your own mortality. Don’t get stuck thinking about it all the time, but the occasional reminder is a good thing.
101. Remember that each day is a new opportunity. No matter your age, today is a chance to make better choices that can help you live longer, healthier, and happier. What will you choose today?