The Amazing Life-Extending Rewards Of Smart Lifestyle Choices

In season four of "The Simpsons," Homer gets fired and that sends him into cardiac arrest. But the strain probably wouldn't have triggered a heart attack if he didn't live on a steady diet of doughnuts, pork chops and beer.

D'oh! Even the least healthy folks know what's good and what's bad (that info is everywhere), but too often they don't feel like they can make significant changes, or that the benefits are worth the struggle.

Well, we know you can upgrade your habits, and the benefits are huge! Recently, an analysis based on 20 studies that included over a million people found that folks with the healthiest habits have a 75% lower risk for cardiovascular disease and Type 2 diabetes than those with the unhealthiest habits. If you already have diabetes, the researchers found that over the course of the studies, a very healthy lifestyle lowers your risk of cardiovascular disease mortality by 49% and cancer mortality by 31%. Plus, you have a 52% lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease - all compared with folks who have diabetes and the unhealthiest lifestyle.

You can grab those life-extending habits. They're not that hard to accomplish when you know it means you'll be around and feeling good for years to come!

- Restrict animal proteins, like red or processed meats, or skip them altogether.

- Increase your intake of fruits and veggies.

- Ditch added sugars and highly processed foods.

- Sleep seven to eight hours nightly.

- Get 300 minutes of physical activity weekly.

© 2019 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.
Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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