How to live longer: Six factors to be on your way to become a supercentenarian

How to live longer: Six factors to be on your way to become a supercentenarian

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The Ageing Analytics Agency, in collaboration with the Gerontology Research Group (GRG), proposed an eye-opening theory: “Lifestyle plays almost no factor in health and longevity after the age of 80.” Advanced age beyond this landmark is said to be due to genetic factors. The key, then, is to reach 80 years old in the first place – while being in good shape. How can that be achieved?

Crafting a detailed report, six factors were identified to contribute to longevity.


One such factor is the quality of your relationships and if you feel socially included.

The report elaborated: “Kindness, love and a strong sense of community make you healthier and happier.”

Meanwhile, those who report feelings of loneliness are more likely to die younger.

Socio-economic status

Higher standards of living and sanitation, mobile phone subscription, and spending on public health have all had a positive impact on longevity.

Brain activity

Another factor is “neural activity”, with increased activity linked to a shorter lifespan.

The National Institute on Ageing (NIH) highlighted research supporting such a notion.

Led by researchers at Harvard Medical School, the team studied gene expression data from brain tissue donated by hundreds of older adults.

They found that those aged 85 and older had fewer transcripts of genes involved in neural excitation than those under the age of 80.

Neural excitation (i.e. neural activity) is when a nerve cell signals to the next receiving nerve cell.

This difference in neural activity is attributed to the expression of the repressor element 1-silencing transcription factor (REST) gene.

The presence of REST seems to suppress the excitation-related genes.

Physical activity

Gerontology Research Group (GRG) added that regular exercise “has significant health benefits”, thereby promoting longevity.

Healthy diet

A diet rich in whole grains, vegetables, fruits, healthy fats, calcium and vitamin D is another factor that contributes to longevity.

The report added that “taking a daily multivitamin” could be beneficial.


“Those who are self-disciplined and goal orientated live longer,” the report stipulated.

Being conscientious has been linked to lower blood pressure, as well as a lower risk of:

  • Psychiatric conditions
  • Diabetes
  • Heart problems
  • Joint problems.

Robert Young, the director of GRG supercentenarian research and database division, commented on the findings.

“All groups have an opportunity to live to 110 [years plus], or at least to adapt the lifestyle practices of supercentenarians.

“Supercentenarians can be considered a good model of successful ageing.”

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