Here are 10 things you're doing that might be SHORTENING your life. Happy Wednesday!
1. You're single. Studies show that being single for long periods of time could shave a decade off your lifespan.
2. You sit for long periods of time. Researchers found that if you sit for over three hours a day, you're cutting a few years off your lifespan. And that ratio just increases the more hours you spend sitting.
3. You don't have a lot of friends. People with weak social connections die at higher rates. Experts found that being lonely can be as bad for your health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. And elderly people with a TON of friends are 22% less likely to go.
4. You watch a lot of TV. This is bad news for binge-watchers over age 25. Every hour of TV you watch supposedly reduces your lifespan by 21 minutes. Go ahead and do the math . . . if that's not too depressing.
5. You eat unhealthy. Obviously. But you might not know that eating red meat can shorten your life by 20% if you eat extra portions.
6. You're unemployed. Not having a job can increase your risk of premature death by 63%.
7. You don't get the big O enough. Basically, if you're not getting any, you're 50% more likely to die than the people who are getting lucky.
8. You put up with annoying co-workers. Luckily, whether or not your BOSS supports you is NOT a factor in your mortality. But people with strong social support at work from their OTHER co-workers tend to live longer.
9. Your sleep is messed up. If you get less than five hours or more than NINE hours, your life expectancy decreases.
10. You fear death. The fear of a shortened lifespan is called "thanatophobia" . . . and it can actually CAUSE you to have a shortened lifespan.
We're getting into cold and flu season, so here's a list from Health.com of the four 'secrets' of people who never get sick. Although they're not really 'secrets' just common sense. Check 'em out . . .
1. Get as Much Fresh Air as Possible. Stepping outside gives you a break from the germs circulating indoors. Plus when you're outside, you're normally more active. Just walking around leads to an increase in the white blood cells that kill off bacteria.
2. Find Time to Relax. Just being stressed out messes with your immune system. Stress hormones inhibit your body from producing a certain type of protein molecules called cytokines. (Sigh-toe-kines)
They trigger your immune system to fight off different microbes that enter your bloodstream. And without enough of them, white blood cells don't know where to go.
3. Wash Your Hands More Often. According to the Centers for Disease Control, hot water and soap are still better than any kind of hand sanitizer. Ideally, you should soap up for about 20 seconds before you rinse.
And the kind of soap that comes in a pump is best. Germs can actually GROW on a bar of soap.
4. Get Enough Sleep. A 2009 study by Carnegie Mellon found that getting less than seven hours of sleep almost TRIPLES your odds of catching a cold. (Health.com)
So far, only a couple of families have taken advantage of a new service available at a Saginaw, Michigan funeral home: Drive-thru viewings. We're not kidding. Paradise Funeral Chapel recently started offering the option, in which the dearly departed's casket is actually placed behind a drive-up window, allowing mourners to pay their last respects while never leaving their car. It's not quite as uncaring as it sounds. It was designed, at least in part, to cater to those with physical limitations. The funeral home's president, Ivan Phillips, says he expects more customers to opt for the drive-thru once they learn it's not a gimmick and is safe to use. Curtains covering the window open when sensors underneath the window recognize the presence of a car. Mourners then get three minutes to view the body as music plays. (ParadiseFuneralChapel.com)
Funeral Home Drive-Thru (Credit/ Paradise Funeral Home in Saginaw)
An entrepreneur in Holland named Peter Van der Helm last year established Walls and Skin, which is a foundation that removes deceased customers' tattoos and preserves them for all eternity so you can give them as gifts or leave them to your loved ones.
First, the body art is sliced off deceased persons body, then frozen or stored in formaldehyde for its journey to Europe. There, pathologists transform the skin strip into what's basically a piece of plastic by taking out the water and fat and injecting it with a liquid polymer like silicone.