Senior secrets

How long do you suppose you’ll live? Why? Have you ever known anyone who has lived 100 years or more and attributed a long life to a particular ritual or lifestyle?

If you are lucky enough to be fêted by NBC’s Willard Scott, then you have an opportunity to tell the world your secret to longevity. These secrets can be contradictory—some centenarians attribute their advanced years to eating bacon at every meal and a taking a nightly nip of gin, while others tout a life of temperance.

One of my recent favorites to receive a Smucker’s greeting from Willard was a woman whose secret to staying young is “using Crisco every day, on her face.”

Yesterday, a Jamaican-born Washingtonian turned 107. She has proudly has enjoyed a lifelong relationship with red meat, and shared a few other secrets in a Washington Post interview over the weekend.

Having had a milestone birthday of lesser proportions last year, I now pay attention to long-living seniors, and check to see how my own lifestyle matches up. Betsy Stanford, the 107-year-old honoree, is fastidious. Check. She plays Scrabble and works crossword puzzles. Check, check. She carries the phone numbers of family and friends in her head. Check (in my case, I am afraid I’ll misplace the list).

I’m not quite sure what I think of the key ingredient in Betsy’s daily diet—a Guinness and Ensure smoothie. I may have to give it a try.

What lifestyle secrets have carried you as far as your most recent birthday?

3 Comments

Filed under Food, Health, Movies, Television and Radio, News

3 responses to “Senior secrets

  1. Marty

    A beer a day keeps the doctor away…

  2. I know lots of people over a hundred. My paternal grandmother lived to 100. My maternal grandfather lived to 101 and maternal grandma to 100. My maternal great-grandmother lived to 115. Everyone in my family kicks the bucket no less than 85. We’ve been lucky: none of them were fuddy-duddies when they went. Common denominator among them: they all said they felt no older than when they were in their teens. They all enjoyed up-to-the-minute pop/rock/whatever music. They drank wine (maternal grandpa went for the German kirschwasser). They had great sex lives (so I’m told). They had four or five or even six small meals a day.

    Of particular note, my paternal grandmother drank two bottles of Dimple whisky daily! No liver cirrhosis, fit as a fiddle. Told us off for being dead slow children…

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