Do you know what your healthy life expectancy is? Do you know you can actually estimate this?
Today I’m going to help you answer these two questions.
Research clearly shows there are 5 keys to your life expectancy. These 5 keys are listed below.
They have the potential to add 12 to 14 years to your life!
However, before you look at these 5 keys I’d like to encourage you to use an online tool for estimating the potential years you have left. It’s called the Healthy Life Expectancy Calculator. It was developed by the Goldenson Center at the University of Connecticut.
This calculator will take you less than 1 minute to complete, and will give you some valuable feedback on what you can do to increase your life expectancy.
Click Here for the Healthy Life Expectancy Calculator.
My Healthy Life Expectancy Results Using This Calculator
I used this tool to see what my life expectancy is. Here are my results:
Your predicted future healthy years is 25.6 Years
Your Relative Healthy Life Expectancy is about 39.5% above Average
Your predicted future unhealthy years is 3.3 Years
Your predicted future total years of living is 28.8 Years i.e. Your predicted age at death is 66 + 28.8 (Current Age + Life Expectancy) = 94.8 Years
Your predicted future unhealthy years, if disabled by a cognitive disease, is 5.8 Years
How does my lifestyle affect my Healthy Life Expectancy?
By exercising more you can increase your healthy life expectancy by 6.38% which is about 19.6 months
At the moment your BMI is looking good, but make sure you keep an eye on it
By sleeping more each night you can increase your healthy life expectancy by 6.38% which is about 19.6 months
Your alcohol consumption has little effect on your healthy life expectancy
Not smoking has a positive impact on your healthy life expectancy
At the time of writing this article I’m 66 years of age. Given my current eating and lifestyle habits I can expect to add 28.8 years to my life. That would take me to age 94.8 with the last 3 years having some health issues.
You will note that if I exercised more and got more sleep I could add an additional 3 years to my life. Maybe make the last 3 years go even better.
5 Critical Lifestyle Factors for Healthy Life Expectancy
In 2018 the scientific journal Circulation published a study that examined more than 123,000 people over a time span of 34 years. They analyzed data from both the Nurses’ Health Study (1980 – 2014) and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (1986 – 2014).
This 2018 study concluded that there are 5 critical lifestyle factors that determine life expectancy.
If you are compliant with these 5 factors, and over the age of 50, then you have the potential to add 12 to 14 years of life expectancy.
Here are the 5 factors:
A healthy diet
Maintaining a body mass index of 18.5 to 24.9 kg/m2
30 minutes or more a day of moderate/vigorous physical activity
Light alcohol intake
Based on their findings, the researchers made the following statement:
“Americans could narrow the life-expectancy gap between the United States and other industrialized countries by adopting a healthier lifestyle.”
The authors of this study also made the following commentary:
“the United States healthcare system has focused primarily on drug discoveries and disease treatment rather than prevention.”
Now when you look at these 5 key factors to healthy life expectancy, some are pretty clear cut. Don’t smoke. Limit your alcohol intake. Exercise each day.
The real impact on your health is in items 1 and 2. A healthy diet and maintaining your body mass index on the lean side of the equation.
For most Americans that is the challenge. And I’m reminded of a great saying from Hippocrates:
“If someone wishes for good health, one most first ask oneself if he is ready to do away with the reason for his illness. Only then is it possible to help him.”
For me I’ve always maintain a lean body mass and watched what I eat. Especially when I turned 60.
I’ve written 4 health articles per month for the last several years to help others learn how to improve their overall health and wellness. And what I’ve found the be the keys are 3 areas of wellness:
This article on healthy life expectancy is not designed to educate you on these 3 keys. But to let you know that it is possible to extent your life. And increase the probability that your additional years of life can be healthy and productive.
I want to encourage you to read my articles, as well as articles from others, that will help you adopt a lifestyle that will add to your healthy life expectancy.