Eternal life? Sure

THERE is nothing new about the mankind’s quest for eternal life. Ancient civilisations, sacred books, modern scientists and health gurus have all from time to time come up with prescriptions to cheat death. But, so far immortality has proved a chimera for mortals. In any case, who wants to live forever, defying the natural laws of decay and death of every living thing?

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Published: Sat 17 Jun 2006, 10:32 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 5:13 PM

Knowing it well, we wish we could live a few years more. The average lifespan of people, depending on in which part of the globe they are living, has gone up considerably, partly due to modern medical advances and health awareness.

Except a miniscule percentage of people, the rest will march to the grave without seeing the magic number 100 in their age. At the same time, the number of centenarians leading a happy life is growing. The secret of their longevity is a matter of intense debate and research. Every centurion has his or her own recipe and arriving at a logical conclusion based on their lifestyles and experience is hazardous. Nevertheless, scientists delving deeply into the secrets of long life have come up with a new set of ‘ten commandments’ that may help you live a few years more.

After peering over 50 years of research, from genetics to geriatrics, in different parts of the world, the scientists have published their simple suggestions in an article titled "How to live to 100 and enjoy it "in New Scientist. Some of their propositions run against widely held beliefs. For example, X-Rays, alcohol, stress, etc. are not exactly bad for you. In fact, taken or given in moderate doses they are believed to have benign effects. Similarly, if you long for an occasional chocolate bite, a favourite tipple and feel like sleeping like a log, you can make a virtue of so-called vices for the sake of a long life.

The scientific study has once again reiterated the importance of a happy marriage that could add up to seven years to a man’s and two years to a woman’s life, though we don’t know yet the basis for the gender bias. You can count on physical and mental exercises to keep the body and mind fit; and add a dash of excitement by learning something new to sharpen your brain. The place where you live —fresh air, clean water, nutritious food and the like —makes all the difference to one’s qualitative life. Watch what you eat as prevention is better than cure. If you follow these simple rules, hopefully you can keep smiling and join that exclusive club of centurions.

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