In Britain, up until last week, it was “ Long Live The Queen”. Queen Elizabeth was the epitome of healthy longevity. She enjoyed an extremely long and active life until the age of 96.
Apart from Queen’s access to healthy living and a disciplined lifestyle, inheriting good genes also contributed to her record-breaking stint on the throne. It is good to note that the queen’s mother lived up to 101. Here are some of the late monarch’s healthy longevity habits.
- Regular Exercises
According to various news reports, Queen Elizabeth walked her dogs, rode horses, and did hiking. She made it a point to stay active throughout her life and into her old age. Studies show that older people who are more active live longer and healthier lives. We could also follow the Queen’s example. Regular exercise and staying active can be the best thing most of us can do for our health.
- A Sense of Purpose in Life
It is hard to quantify this precisely. But if we look at Queen Elizabeth, her life was centered around duty and service to her nation. She was performing her official duties well into her 90s. A growing body of studies suggests that if you have a purpose in life, you’re more likely to feel physically and mentally well on a daily basis. Having a sense of meaning in life is important to health. It becomes more important as we get older.
But if you are thinking, “ Wait a minute! If I don't have a lofty sense of purpose makes my life meaningless?” Just hold on! Don’t stress out. All you have to do is emphasize pursuing what you love and meaningful to you.
Work, Work, Work
In the book, Longevity Project, authors Leslie R Martin and Howard S. Friedman explain that it’s the hard-working and prudent types who live the longest. What is the ideal age to retire? Never, says neuroscientist Daniel Levitin. According to Daniel Levitin, if you want to live a satisfying long life, stay busy.
Queen Elizabeth never retired. So much so that just two days before her death, the monarch appointed Liz Truss as Britain’s Prime Minister, smiling in photos, even though she looked weak. Residents of Okinawa, Japan, one of the “Blue Zones” in the world, where people live a long life, follow the policy of never retiring. They have a strong purpose in life, a driving force that the Japanese call “ikigai”.
- Time Spent in Nature
According to a study published in Nature, spending time in the natural environment can benefit health and well-being. Queen Elizabeth loved nature and she used to spend a good amount of time hiking and doing picnics.
Forest bathing, a term that emerged in Japan, is a form of ecotherapy that involves walking in any natural environment and consciously connecting with what’s around you. It can help in relieving stress and boost your mental health. Green vegetation has a protective effect and is linked to an increased life span.
- Animal Companions
Who doesn’t like watching those cute pet videos? Having a furry friend can reduce loneliness, increase feelings of social support and boost mood. According to National Institute of Health (United States), interacting with animals can lower cortisol levels, decrease blood pressure, and helps in managing stress.
Strong Social Connections
That meeting with your friends or trip to Goa you keep putting off because you’re too busy. Consider it just as important as a doctor’s appointment. Chronic loneliness has an impact on human life. Loneliness can be a risk factor for shortening your lifespan.
The days of the late monarch were filled with people, social interactions, meetings, and visits. She always maintained a close relationship with her family. Having a strong social connection can decrease the risk of premature death.
- Tea & Dark Chocolate
Queen Elizabeth’s morning starts with a cup of Earl Grey Tea. She also indulges in afternoon tea. Tea, especially green tea, is a rich source of antioxidants that reduce the formation of free radicals and prevent cell damage.
The Queen also loved dark chocolate. The not-too-sweet treat is rich in antioxidants and minerals that help in reducing inflammation and support health.
WHY DO SOME PEOPLE LIVE SAU SAAL?
In India, while giving blessings, elders often say “ May You Live A Long Life”. Age can be just a number. However, Mapmygenome has started an initiative that focuses on people who are above 90. The main aim of this endeavour is to find out the answer to the billion-dollar question, “What is the secret to long life”? Is it the genes? Is it healthy habits? or Both?
The influence of genetics does play an important role while looking at the lifespan of those who are 90 and beyond. So in this initiative, Mapmygenome analyzes the genes of those who are above 90 using Genomepatri.
Genomepatri is Mapmygenome’s DNA-based health and wellness solution that gives a comprehensive genetic assessment based on 100+ easy-to-read reports. The report contains insights into your genetic make-up, susceptibility to health conditions, and how you react to medications. Genomepatri helps you to know about your grandparents' genetic information like lifestyle, diet, behavior, and fitness, and eventually find clues about their healthy longevity.
You can join the initiative by getting a free Genomepatri to anyone you know who is over 90. Let's explore their secret to longevity by knowing their genes. Who knows if your grandparents are the lucky carriers of longevity genes?
The test is free for those who are above 90.