Did you see the recent news story about adding decades to your appearance through tobacco, alcohol and inactivity?
A British study tracked about 5,000 adults for 20 years and found that a few bad habits helped folks really wrinkle up and die.
It turns out that smoking, heavy drinking (more than three alcoholic drinks per day for men, two for women), inactivity, and skipping fresh fruit and veggies can make a person look a lot older. About 12 years older to be specific.
And if these activities are engaged in on a regular basis, they’ll march you more quickly to the graveyard.
Among the 314 people in the study who practiced all four bad habits, 91 died (29 percent) during the study. The most common causes of death were heart disease and cancer.
Among the 387 healthiest people with none of the bad habits, only 32 died (about 8 percent).
According to the study, "inactivity" meant less than two hours of exercise each week.
The healthy group, who looked younger and lived longer, did not pig-out on veggies, but they ate at least a carrot and an apple, and drank a glass of fruit or vegetable juice each day.
I’ll tell you what thrilled me most about this study: the fact that my favorite food group – chocolate – was not found to age or kill. Whew! I can continue to live the lifestyle I’ve grown accustomed to. Hope you can too.
The study was published in the April 26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine. The online story was by Lindsey Tanner, the Associate Press medical writer.
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