Lifestyle Factors for a Longer, Healthier Life - Ellen Dolgen
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Five Key Lifestyle Factors for Healthy Aging

Welcome back to Menopause Mondays®! Today, we’re diving into an exciting topic that’s all about living your best, healthiest life for as long as possible. Researchers from Harvard University have been hard at work, and they’ve uncovered five lifestyle factors that may help you live not only longer but also a healthier, more vibrant life. So, let’s roll up our sleeves and take a closer look at these key factors that can make a real difference as we age.

The Fantastic Five

These five lifestyle factors have been identified as the secret sauce for a longer, healthier life:

  • Healthy Diet:
  •  Regular Exercise:
  • Healthy Weight
  • Not Smoking
  • Moderate Alcohol Intake

Beyond the Fantastic Five, there are other factors to consider for a longer and healthier lifespan:

1. Having Life Purpose/Meaning: A sense of purpose in daily life is associated with better sleep, healthier weight, higher physical activity levels, and lower inflammation in some individuals. It also promotes optimism and can lead to more significant contributions to family, community, and society, keeping you stronger and more mobile to engage in various activities.

2. Social Connectedness: Maintaining social connections is crucial. Loneliness and social isolation have been linked to a higher risk of disease, disability, and mortality. Social engagement can combat these negative effects and contribute to a more fulfilling life.

3. Brain Stimulation: Engaging in mentally challenging activities, such as learning new skills or languages, can reduce the risk of cognitive decline. Higher education and intellectually demanding work have also been associated with a lower risk of dementia and cognitive impairment.

4. Improving Sleep Quality: While research on the connection between sleep and cognitive decline is ongoing, some studies suggest that insomnia may be linked to higher rates of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of cognitive decline. Prioritizing quality sleep can be crucial for overall health.

5. Intermittent Fasting: Animal research has shown that caloric restriction through intermittent fasting can increase lifespan. Fasting may improve blood glucose regulation, reduce inflammation, and decrease the production of damaging free radicals, potentially preventing chronic disorders like obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

While these factors offer exciting prospects for healthy longevity, it’s essential to consult with healthcare professionals to determine the most suitable approach for your specific circumstances. The road to a longer, healthier life is paved with a combination of lifestyle choices, so let’s embrace them and make the most of every moment on our journey toward well-being and vitality.

Join us next Monday as we continue to explore topics that empower you to live your best life during menopause and beyond. Here’s to a future filled with health, happiness, and thriving! 🌟🍏🏋️‍♀️

My motto: Suffering in silence is OUT! Reaching out is IN!

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* does not recommend, endorse, or make any representation about any tests, studies, practices, procedures, treatments, services, opinions, healthcare providers, physicians, or medical institutions that may be mentioned or referenced.


4 thoughts on “Five Key Lifestyle Factors for Healthy Aging”

  1. Marna Brown-Krausz

    Would love to hear more about sleep as one ages. I am finding (from looking at my Fitbit) that since I am well beyond menopause, my deep sleep has decreased significantly. Sometimes it is as little as 10 minutes, even though I do not feel sleepy during the day. Do you have any guidance on this issue?
    Thanks Ellen for all that you do.

    1. Hi Marna…..great question! Poor sleep is one of the most common complaints of menopause. First, check into your sleep hygiene as well….It is recommended to keep kids, pets, TV’s, cells out of the bedroom. Many folks find they sleep best in a cool room. Also, avoid eating late. Melatonin production decreases with age. Hormones play a role – estrogen improves sleep quality, enables falling asleep, decreases nighttime wakefulness and also reduces vasomotor symptoms. Progesterone can impact your sleep as well. Sometimes magnesium can help, especially magnesium glycinate or L-Theanine. Melatonin may help – even it if hasn’t helped in the past it maybe worth trying again. There are other sleep meds as well. It is best to make an appointment your menopause specialist to go over the above and together you can come up with a plan of attack. Sleep is very important for our overall health. Good Luck and keep me posted!

  2. I would love to know what to do about weight gain. Since I hit menopause a few years ago the pounds have been creeping on even though I have increased my physical activity and I have been watching the calories. So frustrating!

    1. I hear ya, Cheryl. Weight gain is a common in menopause. Estrogen plays a role in body composition. Estrogen auses women to have more of the hourglass type body shape, with fat stored in the hips, butt, and thighs. It also maintains and increases lean muscle mass. So it makes sense that women find their weight changing. As estrogen decreases it becomes harder to keep that weight off. Muscle building is very important for longevity and helping with weight gain. I have increased my work outs. I have weights at home. Lifting weights increases bone density and has anti-inflamatory benefits. No need for a gym membership. Also, I use TRX home gym equipment. Check it out. Check into your eating plan….sometimes that needs tweaking as well. After traveling across the Country for almost two decades advocating for menopause awareness, I am struck by the lack of information so greatly needed for women through the three stages of menopause: perimenopause, menopause, and post-menopause. In response to these tremendous needs, I created an affordable course, launching soon, which has everything women need to know in one easy online course, Fearless Vagina: Ellen Dolgen’s Guide to Menopause. You can find more information about this on my homepage.

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