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100-year-olds report lifetime of lousy health choices in major study
Old 08-03-2011, 04:08 PM   #1
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100-year-olds report lifetime of lousy health choices in major study

Damn, looks like my decision to take SS at 62 could turn out to be a big mistake.

Oh well, party on!

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Researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University have found that many very old people age 95 and older could be poster children for bad health behavior with their smoking, drinking, poor diet, obesity and lack of exercise.

The very old are, in fact, no more virtuous than the general population when it comes to shunning bad health habits, leaving researchers to conclude that their genes are mostly responsible for their remarkable longevity.
Clean living key to long life? Don't believe it
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Old 08-03-2011, 04:40 PM   #2
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Yes!!! Finally, the news we have all been waiting to hear. Now I can gain weight, stop working out, and start smoking, drinking, and/or taking illicit drugs.* Party on! Let's start with lots of BACON!

*Oh, well I guess I will just continue working on the weight loss and working out, since it does help my quality of life. And I really don't have any desire for the smoking, drinking, and drugs, so they're out too.
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Old 08-03-2011, 04:44 PM   #3
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I read this earlier today, and I believe it, up to a certain point. I think that a moderate lifestyle and good genes might contribute to what we consider today to be extreme longevity. I am not a medical professional, but I work with a senior population, and I have talked to people who have sustained serious health problems earlier in life (cancers, heart attacks) who still live to the upper 90's and over 100. They are not at all what one could consider "health nuts" but tell me almost without exception that they eat anything they want, have the odd glass of wine, etc. They tell me they don't know why they have lived so long because they have never done anything (in their minds at least) to promote it. Most are pretty thin so I think that is a huge plus although they occasionally tell me they were not always thin when younger. The really, really old also tend not to take a truckload of medications from my limited experience.
Many (but not all) have pretty good family support. More important than family seems to be a few close friendships and some degree of faith.
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:06 PM   #4
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I exercise and keep the weight down in the hopes that I will improve the odds that I will age gracefully and then fall off a cliff (metaphorical health cliff, not real geographic) at my genetically assigned time. Probably in my mid to late 80s. I don't expect to get an extra 5 or 10 years of longevity.

Nothing will get me to eat my vegetables.
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:56 PM   #5
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Let's start with lots of BACON!
Absolutely! Bacon is a low-carb, healthy food. Really.
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Old 08-03-2011, 08:59 PM   #6
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mmmmmmm.....bacon!

My mother smoked for 70 years, ate what she wanted - which was usually steak, potatoes, vegetable, and salad - and drank right along with the best of them. She did have her carotid arteries cleaned out in her 70's to prevent stroke. And, she took blood pressure meds from mid-sixties on. She was cognitively clear until the last year, when she had several mini-strokes. Mom died just before her 90th birthday.

But, she had the ability to relax, and I think that helped. Mom was the classic "B" personality type. My opinion only - but, I think the real killer is chronic stress to the point where one loses one's sense of self.
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Old 08-03-2011, 09:35 PM   #7
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... and I have talked to people who have sustained serious health problems earlier in life (cancers, heart attacks) who still live to the upper 90's and over 100. They are not at all what one could consider "health nuts" but tell me almost without exception that they eat anything they want, have the odd glass of wine, etc.
One of life's very few pleasures at this age is messing with the minds of the young whippersnappers who want to know how you've managed to live this long...

Late at night, after the staff's gone home, you can hear them talking among themselves: "Yeah, that's it, tomorrow we tell them about our all-bacon diet!"
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Old 08-03-2011, 09:39 PM   #8
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And I really don't have any desire for the smoking, drinking, and drugs, so they're out too.
I'll try to pick up the slack...
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Old 08-03-2011, 09:41 PM   #9
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I think as long as I have a desire for anything, I'll be ok.
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:05 PM   #10
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My father is 97, mom is close behind. Both still live in their own house without any outside help. They are now starting to slow down. I hope their longevity is due to good genes and it has been passed down.
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Old 08-04-2011, 12:20 AM   #11
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My BFF's grandmother turns 104 this month. She loves her beer and candy.
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Old 08-04-2011, 12:48 AM   #12
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I stopped reading this kind of stuff once I found the "wine is good for you" studies - anything else is the seriously suspect conclusions drawn from selective data using unsound methods prepared by people with vested interests in separating me from my money.
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Old 08-04-2011, 04:12 PM   #13
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Purely anecdotal but I have two relatives right at 100 and still kicking, they were fairly heavy wine drinkers, not the cheap stuff either. My 2 grandparents who were teetotalers have been dead for almost 20 years now.

Of course the wine drinkers also were very well off financially so that might have helped.
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Old 08-04-2011, 04:24 PM   #14
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There is certainly a "lifestyle link" to longevity in terms of people living to their 70s instead of their 60s, or to their 80s instead of their 70s -- but once you start hitting centenarian country, it's more the "genetic lottery" than anything else.

Also, as I see it, bad "lifestyle choices" often wind up being cancer or heart disease, usually in one's 60s or 70s. By the time one is 90, most likely if what you've been doing hasn't killed you yet, it won't. Not always, for sure, but I think you get well into your 90s and beyond, you've lived past the age where lifestyle choices are likely to kill you.
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