Dr. Clyde Yancy, a cardiologist from Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago says more people could live to the age of 100 by following seven simple steps to change their lifestyle.
According to Dr. Clyde Yancy, changes to lifestyle such as keeping a healthy weight, not smoking and controlling your cholesterol levels are an easy way to add an extra 10 years or more to your life span.
Dr. Clyde Yancy said 90% of people could live to the age of 90 and even reach 100 by following his advice.
The other steps are regulating blood pressure, managing diabetes, eating a healthy diet and getting active.
“By following these steps, we can compress life-threatening disease into the final stages of life and maintain quality of life for the longest possible time,” Dr. Yancy will tell experts from around the world at the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress on Sunday.
Dr. Clyde Yancy is Magerstadt professor and chief of the division of cardiology at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.
The specialist is urging governments to reverse the tide of lifestyle diseases by initiatives such as forcing food manufacturers to cut salt levels, and introducing smoking bans and health education in schools.
“We need to act now,” Dr. Yancy said.
The expert also said less than 1 in 10 Americans follow the seven steps in changing lifestyle.
Dr. Clyde Yancy’ seven steps to change your lifestyle and live to 100:
1. Get active: Inactivity can shave almost 4 years off a person’s expected lifespan. People who are physically inactive are twice as likely to be at risk for heart disease or stroke.
2. Know and control cholesterol levels: High blood cholesterol can lead to the build up of fatty deposits in your arteries, which are increasing your risk for heart disease and stroke.
3. Follow a healthy diet: Eating a healthy diet including plenty of fruit and vegetables is one of the most important things you can do to improve your health.
4. Know and control blood pressure: High blood pressure is often called a “silent killer” because it has no warning signs or symptoms. By knowing and controlling your blood pressure, you can cut your risk of stroke by up to 40% and the risk of heart attack by up to 25%.
5. Achieve and maintain a healthy weight: Being overweight or obese is major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Being obese can reduce your life span by almost 4 years.
6. Manage diabetes: Diabetes increases the risk of high blood pressure, atherosclerosis (narrowing of the arteries), coronary artery disease, and stroke, particularly if your blood sugar levels are poorly controlled.
7. Stop smoking: Half of all long-term smokers die early from smoking-related diseases, including heart disease, lung cancer and chronic bronchitis. As soon as you become smoke-free, your risk of heart disease and stroke begins to decrease. After 15 years, your risk will be nearly that of a non-smoker.
Dr. Clyde Yancy also said there was hope of reversing the rising tide of health problems:
“The opportunity for prevention is not an unrealistic expectation. Over the past 40 years the rates of heart disease and stroke have steadily declined.”