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5 Choices That Can Help You Live Longer

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mar21homespunweb.jpgBy Leslie Garcia

RISMEDIA, March 12, 2008-(MCT)-Are you optimistic? Add eight years to your life. Do you have low self-esteem? Alas, subtract four (and, no, we did not add “you loser.” That must have been you). We love info like this, culled from “The Long Life Equation” (Adams Media; $10).

We chose five tips to share. The book is written by a doctor, not-although the advice may sound familiar-by your mom. (Unless your mom is Dr. Trisha Macnair, but we digress.)

1. Be a girl.
Or at least revel in being female. In all developed countries and even most underdeveloped ones, women live longer than men. Years added for being female: 10.

2. Be informed about your health.
Ignorance is not bliss. Know your cholesterol and blood pressure levels. Know what screenings you need, and schedule them. Know what health risks you face. Years added for being informed: 2.

3. Pick a job other than crab fishing in the Bering Sea.
Ditto for timber cutting, where you risk being among the 118 per 100,000 who die, most by having a tree fall on them. Years subtracted for such careers: 3.

4. Think you’re old? Prophecy fulfilled.
Keep your mind open and your eye on something other than the calendar. Stop yapping, “I’m too old.” Years subtracted for such an attitude: 5.

5. Take a nap.
Regular 30-minute midday naps may help reduce the risk of heart disease, according to a study from Greece. Longer naps could indicate your nighttime sleep is inadequate. Years added for daily snoozing: 1.

© 2008, The Dallas Morning News.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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