While doing my morning reading, I came across a Washington Post article titled “Healthy lifestyle may increase life expectancy, research suggests.” If you know me or are one of my patients, you know I have been an advocate for a healthy lifestyle for the duration of my career (and even longer), so while I know the many benefits, it was nice to see it validated by a BMJ study that showed a healthy lifestyle may allow older people to add to their life expectancy– three years for women and six for men – to their life expectancy. Adding extra years to your life sounds great if you feel good and can enjoy the extra time.  I vividly remember being in residency training and knowing there had to be more to medicine than what I was taught because I simply didn’t believe in the “sick” model that informs American medicine. That way of thinking stems from my family who always emphasized that if you live a healthy lifestyle, good health follows! I am so thankful my family instilled this in me because it has impacted my career as medical professional.

SilverDisobedients strike me as people who want to live a healthy lifestyle (yes, I read your comments and the online interaction makes me feel like I know many of you!), so I have outlined three simple things you can do to live longer, and healthier, starting today!

So Long Sugar

While there isn’t one single diet that works for everyone, there is ONE ingredient that everyone can benefit from ditching (or dramatically lowering): added SUGAR. While sugar is damaging to many body parts, it is particularly horrible for kidneys. Your kidneys are your body’s filtration system. They filter your blood, eliminate toxins, maintain a critical balance of sodium and potassium in your body, and help regulate your blood pressure—just to name a few of their critical functions. If you want healthy kidneys, avoid added sugars and processed foods, and stick to fresh, healthy, nutrient-rich foods—like organic produce, grass-fed meat, wild-caught fish and seafood, nuts, and cheese.

Be Eager for Exercise

Exercise deserves equal attention in any conversation about longevity. Because if Americans are dying prematurely, you can largely blame our love affair with sedentary living. Research shows that lifelong exercise might be the closest thing there is to a real-world fountain of youth! What exercise do you enjoy? Whether it be walking, running, swimming, cycling, weightlifting, or yoga, there is a study to support the benefits of it for a healthy lifestyle. I have always found this article in The Guardian fascinating that discusses a cycling study outlined in two papers in the journal Aging Cell that showed the anti-ageing effects of cycling appeared to even extend to the immune system! Exercise is everything!

Supplement Your Health

I haven’t suffered a full-blown illness in decades, which likely is a result of my motivation to live a healthy life. I do have some “secret weapons” in my back pocket that I turn to for preventative measures. If I have the first inkling that I may be getting sick, I reach for my supplements:

  • Vitamin D—1,250 mcg (50,000 IU) for two days
  • Vitamin A (as retinol)— 12,000 mcg (40,000 IU) for two days
  • Olive Leaf Extract—500 mg three times per day for two days
  • Oil of Oregano—500 mg three times per day for two days

When I am out and about, especially now, I am uber-focused on air quality– both indoors and outdoors, that can trigger a variety of health issues. When I am going to be indoors, I make sure I have my nUVo™ Traveler handy, as it is a little device that gives me my own protective bubble while destroying bacteria, molds and viruses, rather than just catching them the way ordinary air filters do. I feel well-protected having one wherever I go! As a full-time practicing physician, I don’t have time to be sick, and this air disinfector is just another tool I use to help keep me healthy and happy!

Aging happens if we’re lucky, but it is important for you to keep calm… and get your healthy lifestyle on! It is never too late to start implementing ways to improve your health which will impact your happiness. Health is everything which is why I dedicated my career to helping patients feel their best! For more health tips, check out my blog at www.drpescatore.com.