Myth-busting for longevity

DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) -Life expectancy in the United States just dropped again, according to a new report.

But there are some things you can do to be healthy and live a long life. Part of accomplishing this is understanding what are truths versus myths when it comes to healthy habits and longevity.

Michele Cuffe, certified personal trainer, nutritionist, spin instructor and personal health coach, outlines important factors that can help all of us live a longer, healthier and happier life.

  • Myth #1: Eliminate all stress in your life: We’ve been told to eliminate as much stress as we can. But stress is actually important and necessary to human survival. The problem is stress has taken over our lives to the point where it causes serious medical problems like heart disease, high blood pressure and digestive issues. Don’t eliminate stress altogether. Instead, learn to control your stress and reduce it by making time to slow down and relax, breathing properly and doing more of the things you love.
  • Myth #2: You need less sleep with age. Americans love to brag about their lack of sleep, and unfortunately, it’s killing them. Not only do we need more sleep, we also need to increase the quality of our sleep. One of the best ways to do this is by creating an environment that is extremely cold and dark. Also, make sure and get at least 20 minutes of direct sunlight during the day which will help regulate your circadian rhythm so your body will produce more melatonin at night. This will help you sleep both longer and better.
  • Myth #3: I need a great big workout everyday: There’s nothing new about telling people to exercise for better health. But what you might find interesting is that you don’t have to become a gym rat and devote hours on end working out. We now know that even a brisk walk of 20 to 30 minutes a day carries many health benefits, as does even a small amount of strength training. Go slow and make a goal to do whatever you can.
  • Myth #4: Any liquid will hydrate me: The only thing you should be drinking is water. End of story. Beverages with alcohol, caffeine and lots of sugar that most Americans love to consume don’t count because they increase dehydration and cause other problems in the body. Cuffe very strongly recommends that we drink 100 ounces of water every day.
  • Myth #5: I should diet more: Most diets don’t work because they eliminate either fat, carbs or calories, all things the body needs. Trying to eliminate these necessities creates problems. Focus more on consuming better quality foods. A good diet for all humans to follow is focused on two things: plants and animals. If it comes out of a box it’s not good for you. Also, make sure and indulge on plenty of nuts and seeds, and the only oils you should be using are olive, avocado and coconut oils. It really is that simple for the body to perform optimally.
  • Myth #6: I don’t need to get hot and sweaty: Most people like to be comfortable. But getting weirdly hot, 101 degrees, at least 3 times every week for 30 minutes, has been shown to improve health. You can accomplish this by working out in a hot room or outdoors, intense sex, sitting in a hot tub, or by sitting in the steam room or sauna.

Interested viewers can follow Michelle on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/michelecuffefitness/?hl=en

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