Staying slim, refraining from smoking and cutting your caffeine intake to four cups of coffee a day, is the secret to living to 100, scientists claim.
For the past 50 years, scientists at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have followed the health and lifestyles of 855 men born in 1913. Ten of the men lived to 100, and the study revealed a number of similarities in how the centenarians lived their lives.
CENTENARIAN CHECK LIST
- Don’t smoke
- Don’t drink more than four coffees a day
- Stay cheerful
- Keep your blood pressure low
- Maintain a healthy cholesterol level
- Have a mother who lived into her 80s
- Stay slim
- Own your own home by 50
- Maintain a good posture
Researchers found it also helps to own your own house by the age of 50 – an indication of a high standard of living. In addition they highlighted the importance of maintaining good middle-age fitness and having a mother who lived a long time. Dr Lars Wilhelmsen, who has been involved in the study for the past 50 years, said:
“The unique design has enabled us to identify the factors that influence survival after the age of 50. Our recommendation for people who aspire to centenarianism is to refrain from smoking, maintain healthy cholesterol levels and confine themselves to four cups of coffee a day.
The team discovered 27 per cent of those taking part survived to reach the age of 80, while 13 per cent made their 90th birthdays. Of all the deaths occurring after the age of 80, 42 per cent were attributed to heart disease, 20 per cent to infection, eight per cent to stroke, eight per cent to cancer, six per cent to pneumonia, and 16 per cent to other causes.