Health Headlines: Healthy attitude, healthy life

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Published: Jul. 24, 2023 at 8:19 AM CDT
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Denver, Colo. - (Ivanhoe Newswire) - While the connection between physical health and longevity is well-established, researchers are now finding even our attitude towards aging can add, or subtract, years to our life. But how do we keep a positive perspective when we’re bombarded with images of old wicked witches and grumpy old men? We are in a new age of how we think about aging, and it may just help us all live longer, healthier lives.

The negative images of aging are being replaced with the 60-plus crowd making the most out of life.

Brenda Mosby says “Someone said this to me a long time ago, that age is a number. It’s a number. And we mentally put these caveats on top of it. And it’s like, that doesn’t make sense.”

Brenda will not let a number define her.

“I am surprised to say at 68 I am on no medications. I just feel so good. And I felt happy all the time.” States Brenda.

In just the past few years, Brenda married, started studying ballet and has taken center stage in a play, all of that and Brenda is blind!

Brenda says “I lost my sight, and I found my vision. My life after blindness has been a fairytale.”

Research out of Yale University finds people with an upbeat, optimistic view of getting older lived an average of seven and a half years longer than their negative peers.

Aditi Gurkar, Ph.D., Cell Biologist & Aging Expert at University of Pittsburgh explains, “There’s been tons of studies that have shown that being optimistic in life somehow it’s this, you know, your mind playing tricks on your body in some sort, where you just have a healthier perspective in life.”

Ways to help lift your aging attitude toward aging, find positive role models. Don’t blame your age. If you lose your car keys, it happens to everyone. Stop turning down fun opportunities and never say you’re too old. Make sure you mix with millennials. And find your purpose. A study out of Boston University found that having a purpose lowered the risk of death for men by 20 percent, and 34 percent in women.

For Brenda, she has found her groove.

Brenda says, “My purpose is to be an example of love and joy and happiness in everything in everything I do.”

You’ve heard the good, and now for the bad. Research at Berkley found a negative attitude about growing older could increase your risk of dementia, heart disease and even menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and insomnia. One theory is that poor mental health can lead to unhealthy coping mechanisms such as substance abuse, poor diet, and lack of exercise.

Contributors to this news report include Marsha Lewis, Producer; Roque Correa, Editor.