I've been reading a lot lately about the outlook for an individual to live a long time. Some things make sense, others make you think.
There appears to be a consensus the you are more likely to have a long life if you eat healthy and stay active. That would appear to be a no-brainer. Other traits include being conscientious, optimistic, happy, and socially connected. That also makes sense. Being extroverted was mentioned in one article, as well as a sense of spirituality.
Another study looked at men born in 1887 and who lived to be 100. This was possible as they were able to study longevity records and find men lived to be 100, then cross-referenced to the beginning of the draft in 1917. The men were all 30 at the time and had at least 4 children.
Why would the number of children make any difference? The article mentioned that this may have provided a means for care as the parent aged. It could be, but kids can be a two-edged sword. They can be a source of great joy, and they can be a thorn in your side as you progress through life.
My thoughts on this? Now if you are a happy, optimistic man who likes to laugh and enjoy life, you may very well raise your kids to have these same traits. The others could very well lead you to an early grave, and you wouldn't live to the age they were interested in.
Another interesting factor, the men who lived the longest were mostly farmers. I can see how they could come to that conclusion. There were a lot of farmers in 1917. Farmers had a physically active and hard working life. Today we have fewer farmers than were around then. There are more diverse jobs available, and a lot of farms have now been converted to corporate farms. Would today's population show the same results on longevity?
One major thought on my mind: What about the women? Obviously it would be difficult task to find a group of women available for a study with the same parameters as the one for men. But it would be interesting to find out how a matched study of the gals would compare.
In the meantime I'll muddle through the best I can. I'll laugh and be happy, at least most of the time. I'll try to stay active and surround myself with family and friends. If I make it to be 100, maybe I'll come back and let you know if I was successful in the task. However, I do have quite a few years left to make it to that milestone, so I make no promises.
And I do hope you are successful in living a life of joy to a ripe old age.