6 Sneaky Ways to Live Longer

6 Sneaky Ways to Live Longer

Turn back the clock with these six simple habits.

1 / 7

By Taylor Dahl

Go online and you can find hundreds of tips and tricks all claiming to be the secret to the fountain of youth. But the real keys to living longer aren’t that mysterious. In fact, they can actually help you lower your RealAge—the age your body thinks it is compared to your chronological age. To help you get started and stay motivated, try following these six, easy habits that are all proven to help boost longevity.

Anti-Aging Habit: Walk

2 / 7 Anti-Aging Habit: Walk

You probably know walking has a host of health benefits. In addition to easing stress and helping you lose weight, it can help fight serious diseases. “Walking gets your heart beating a little bit faster and tends to help it stay strong, says Keith Roach, MD, chief medical officer of Sharecare and co-creator of the RealAge® Test. In fact, a 2013 study found that regular walking lowers the risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes just as well as running or jogging.

Anti-Aging Habit: Have Better Sex

3 / 7 Anti-Aging Habit: Have Better Sex

Not only can a healthy sex life help your relationship, but it also lowers your RealAge. According to Dr. Roach, men with healthy sex lives have a reduced risk of prostate cancer. For women, the benefits are more about less stress and better relationships—both of which can reduce the risk of chronic health problems, says Roach.

Anti-Aging Habit: Manage Your Anger

4 / 7 Anti-Aging Habit: Manage Your Anger

Do coworkers call you a hothead? Does 6 p.m. traffic send you into road rage? If so, you could be hurting your health more than you know. Studies show that the very small number of men who admit to a temper problem have a high risk of developing heart disease, explains Roach. And while extreme anger in men or women is rare, it’s incredibly dangerous for those who have it. “If somebody is walking around stressed and ready to explode at any minute, that can’t be good for their heart,” he says.

Anti-Aging Habit: Sit Less, Move More

5 / 7 Anti-Aging Habit: Sit Less, Move More

No one knows exactly why a sedentary lifestyle is bad for your health, but some theories suggest that humans were never really meant to sit. A seated position puts an abnormal amount of pressure on the vascular system, making blood vessels more likely to clot, which can slow down blood flow and make the heart work extra hard to pump blood throughout the body. “People who sit for a large part of their day are at a considerably higher risk for developing heart disease, the number one killer in the United States,” Roach explains.

Anti-Aging Habit: Skip the Junk Food

6 / 7 Anti-Aging Habit: Skip the Junk Food

You may be great at ignoring the office candy machine, but processed foods—especially refined carbs like chips, pretzels and snack cakes—can be just as dangerous. Processed foods turn into sugar quickly, causing a spike in blood sugar levels, which forces the pancreas to make even more insulin, warns Roach. All that added insulin can lead to weight gain, diabetes and heart disease—potentially cutting years off your life.

Anti-Aging Habit: Meditate

7 / 7 Anti-Aging Habit: Meditate

Think meditation isn't for you? Think again. “Meditation isn’t necessarily about sitting on a prayer mat with your eyes half-closed and in the lotus position,” says Roach, “It may be about learning some breathing exercises you can do when you find yourself worrying.”

In addition to helping you find your Zen during a hectic day, practicing mindfulness meditation can even change your brain. According to a 2016 study published in Biological Psychiatry, meditating regularly can help you stay calm and handle stressful situations better, which in turn may also reduce your risk of other diseases. 

Healthy Habits

Healthy Habits

Staying healthy doesn't happen by accident. It's the product of healthy habits practiced everyday. This could mean opting for an apple instead of chips with lunch, limiting your TV time, taking the stairs instead of the elevator o...

r setting health goals each month. Healthy living is a choice, and one that's easier to make than you think.