How to Become a Centenarian

By , 9:00 am on

Living a long and healthy life is a wonderful accomplishment, and quite a few people are achieving this feat in the modern day. Many seniors and their families are curious about the secrets behind the good health centenarians both past and present have enjoyed, and the North Houston, TX, caregivers at Home Care Assistance are here to discuss a few of those secrets.

Schedule Frequent Checkups

According to a 2012 study by Harvard Health Publications, the average life expectancy in North America has almost doubled within the last century. One of the reasons people are living longer is because preventative medicine has become exponentially more effective. Meeting with a doctor at least twice a year to check for issues such as diabetes, osteoporosis, and high cholesterol can allow your aging loved one to take a more aggressive approach to maintaining his or her health and prevent the lingering symptoms of untreated diseases.

Simplify the Diet

Okinawa, Japan, is well known for having one of the densest centenarian populations in the world, and many who live there attribute their longevity to a healthy diet. Mitsue Toyoda is a Japanese supercentenarian who follows a traditional Okinawan diet consisting of fresh produce, local seafood, and white rice. With limited access to fast food and processed ingredients, seniors living in Okinawa also have much lower rates of high blood pressure, diabetes, and arthritis.

Avoid Tobacco

Few lifestyle habits are as detrimental to a person’s health as using tobacco products. Nicholas Pierro, who lived to be 102, claimed quitting smoking was one of the most important decisions he ever made. He stopped using tobacco products when he noticed he and all of his friends were developing chronic coughs. Heart disease is one of the most common causes of death in the world, and over 30 percent of all cases of heart disease are linked to smoking.

Be Kind

Gertrude Weaver lived to be 116, which made her one of the oldest verified supercentenarians at the time. Gertrude often claimed being a kind human was one of the most important factors when it came to her longevity. In an interview with TIME, she told the journalist she devoted her life to helping those in need, which impacted her physical wellbeing as much as her own personal happiness.

Though no single lifestyle change can guarantee a long, healthy life, there are many choices your loved one can make to increase his or her chances. At Home Care Assistance, we offer a program called the Balanced Care Method (BCM), which is based on studies of the elders living in Okinawa and encourages seniors to exercise, eat a healthy diet, and focus on other lifestyle factors that can increase their life expectancy. For more information on BCM and the in-home elder care North Houston families trust, call one of our experienced Care Managers at 832-412-1345 to schedule a complimentary consultation.