What would it be like to be a supercentenarian? That’s someone who lives to about 110 years old.
But are we getting ahead of ourselves? Right now, I’m more than halfway to being a centenarian — someone who lives to 100. And if genes count for anything, I might very well find out what that’s like.
My mom will be 100 in October. Here’s how she summarizes what it’s like:
“I miss the people who are gone, but I’m glad I’m still here to be with the ones who are still here. I forget things, but I can still read and balance my checkbook. So I guess I’ll stick around as long as they let me!”
No one expects to live this long. Making it to your 90s seems like a bonus!
But recently, some very reliable statistical tools have shown it’s certainly possible to surpass the 100-year mark by a few decades.
What are your chances of becoming one of those supercentenarians?
Is there a limit on our lifespan?
Some scientists believe that disease and the inevitable deterioration of our cells place a natural limit on the human lifespan.
But others maintain that there is no “cap” on how long we can live. They point to record-breaking supercentenarians as evidence.
The oldest living person, Jeanne Calment of France, was 122 when she died in 1997. Currently, the world’s oldest person is 118-year-old Kane Tanaka of Japan.
According to new research from the University of Washington, a lifespan of 125 or even 130 years by the end of this century is well within the realm of possibility.
Statistics say it’s possible to live well past 100
Extreme longevity is expected to continue to rise slowly, but just how long could humans live?
Michael Pearce, a University of Washington doctoral student in statistics, and Adrian Raftery, a professor of sociology and statistics, used a common statistical tool to estimate the likelihood of someone breaking Jeanne Calment’s record of 122 years.
According to their calculations, the probability is close to 100 percent.
Among their other important findings:
- The probability of a person living to 124 years old, is almost as great (99 percent probability)
- There’s about a 68 percent chance that someone will make it to127 years old
- An even longer lifespan is possible but much less likely, with a 13 percent probability of someone living to age 130
- It is “extremely unlikely” that someone would live to 135 in this century
My plan for living til 100
It’s unlikely that most of us will live to these extreme ages. It is much more probable that most of us will live well into our 80s and 90s, and many certainly could make it to 100.
And ongoing longevity research is providing much insight on how to improve our odds.
That’s why I’m even more determined to live a lifestyle that will keep my body and brain functioning well, right into old age.
Even if I don’t make it to 100, it will offer me the chance to enjoy the fruits of long life without slowing down or giving up the things that give my life meaning.
So, what’s my plan?
Nothing you haven’t heard before, but it certainly bears repeating:
- Diet. Dr. Bruce Ames has been a research scientist for seven decades and has studied vitamins for over a decade, His theory of “survival vitamins” vs. “longevity vitamins” identifies nine vitamins and minerals most of us are lacking that are essential for longevity.
- Exercise. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is a form of exercise that alternates between periods of high-intensity exercise and periods of low-intensity exercise. It is scientifically proven to improve heart health, blood pressure, and insulin sensitivity and to reduce abdominal fat.
- Cultivating a positive outlook. There’s plenty of research proving that optimism and gratitude will extend your lifespan.
- Meditation. Research shows that a regular meditation practice can do more than help you focus. It can actually extend life by strengthening our DNA and reducing inflammation at a cellular level.
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How Long Can a Person Live? The 21st Century May See a Record-Breaker — Neuroscience News
International Database on Longevity — supercentenarians.org
New evidence that optimists live longer — Medical Xpress