If reputable scientists were to prescribe a healthy lifestyle, what would they include?
July 31, 2012 10:56 AM Subscribe
What are the most significant lifestyle changes I can make to improve my chances of maintaining a high quality-of-life throughout (a hopefully long) life?
posted by dynamiiiite to Health & Fitness (27 answers total) 79 users marked this as a favorite
I want to hack my quality of life. More specifically, I want to determine what DATA-SUPPORTED changes I can make to improve my mind-body health in the long term (I'm 25, and I want to live to a spry 100! or at least a spry something)
Some changes I'm considering:
-eat more antioxidant/nutrient-rich foods, especially greens, berries, fish, etc.
-stop drinking alcohol (or drink VERY sparingly, e.g. 1-2 units/month)
-reduce my sugar and refined grain consumption
-practice yoga several times a week
Things I already do:
-various forms of cardio
-eat appropriate portion sizes/maintain a healthy weight
The thing is, I don't want to severely impact my short-term quality of life for something that might only create mild to moderate improvements in the long term, or make a change that helps one thing but hurts another. So for example, if it's sufficient to reduce my sugar consumption to moderate levels vs. cutting it out entirely, I don't want to eliminate my nightly piece of chocolate or occasional creme brulee because that would just make me sad. As another example, I enjoy getting my cardio from 10-20 miles of running weekly, but I don't want to destroy my joints while I improve my heart health.
I am almost certainly overthinking this, I realize, but it feels like there's so much science and no way to sift through it all to come up with the appropriate Rx for life. What am I missing? Extremely specific suggestions are welcome, as are generalized suggestions that have some data to support them. If there are quality-of-life links that go beyond just the physiological (e.g. close friends/family relationships), please bring those on as well!