Every one of us wants to live a long, productive life. Yet how happy can we be if we are unhealthy and miserable and unable to do the things we want to do?
Today, I’d like to share 7 secrets of longevity with the hope that you will examine your own life and see how you can put these into practice.
Secret #1 Calorie Consumption
Secret #2 Plant-Based Diet
Secret #3 Exercise
Secret #4 Avoid Toxins
Secret #5 Rest and Sleep
Secret #6 Environment
Secret #7 Fasting
Secret #1: Calorie Consumption
Eat fewer calories and live longer! The key here is to eat foods that are high in nutrients and low in calories. Dr. Fuhrman's equation H=N/C, which means health is equal to nutrients divided by calories, is good to follow. If we don't consume a diet that is high in antioxidants, micronutrients and phytochemicals, our bodies will be starving and it can cause cravings for unhealthy food. It’s not just the amount of calories you consume, it’s the quality of those calories.
Secret #2: Plant-Based Diet
Berries, seeds, green leafy vegetables, tomatoes, cruciferous vegetables, onions, and mushrooms are among the top foods for good health.1 Cruciferous vegetables also have the most powerful anticancer effects of all foods, so consuming them every day is important.2 The National Cancer Institute for Health recommends 9 servings of fruit and vegetables per day. However, Dr. Fuhrman recommends 4-6 fresh fruits and 8 servings of vegetables per day, one being a raw cruciferous serving and one being a cooked cruciferous serving.3 These are some beneficial foods you want to make sure you include in your diet:
Tomatoes, carrots, red peppers, and other carotenoid containing foods
Seeds that have beneficial lignans and plant sterols
Colorful fruits like berries, cherries, and plums for phenols and flavonoids
Beans for resistant starches and lectins.
All these foods enhance longevity and reduce the risk of developing cancer.
Secret #3: Exercise
Who hasn't heard that exercise is part of a healthy diet plan? A combination of aerobic and strength training is best, but, more importantly, do what your body will allow and do it consistently. Research has linked sitting for long periods of time with a number of health concerns, including obesity and metabolic syndrome — a cluster of conditions that includes increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, and abnormal cholesterol levels. Too much sitting also seems to increase the risk of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer.4
Secret #4: Avoid Toxins
Be aware of toxins from water, foods, chemicals, pollution, and medications and do your best to avoid them. If possible, purchase organic food or plant an organic garden in your yard. You can always grow some organic sprouts right in your kitchen! Refrain from using weed killers and insecticides on your lawn, and use non toxic laundry detergent and organic household cleaners.
Secret #5: Rest and Sleep
Get enough rest and sleep to help your body recover and heal properly. During sleep, your body removes the buildup of waste -- sleep is necessary for the normal functioning of your endocrine and nervous system.
Secret #6: Environment
An emotionally satisfying environment is vital to our health. Our minds have a powerful effect on healing and wellness. A satisfying family/social life and a happy work environment are all related to positive health. Cultivate interests in people and things such as art, music, nature, sports, and entertainment.
Secret #7: Fasting
Fast when you are under the weather and not feeling well. Our body has the innate intelligence and power to heal itself if we don't hamper it. We lose our appetite when sick, which is nature's way of telling us not to eat and that our digestion is not well equipped for digesting food. When you're sick, it's best to stay home and take the opportunity to rest, fast or eat lightly, and drink pure water. If you can do those things, your recovery will be quicker.5
Great health is a combination of the above secrets, so take action steps today and watch what happens!
If you'd like to learn more about these secrets to longevity, sign up for a free 30-minute coaching session!
(1) Group Start Lecture #10, page 33
(2) Group Start Lecture #10, page 35
(3) Group Start Lecture #10, page 37
(5) Dr. Fuhrman’s Healthy Times, Newsletter No. 12, March 2004