Tuesday 24 October 2017

Top tips to help you reach 100

Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

The number of Irish people living to 100 years of age is rising with 423 centenarians receiving their cheque and letter from the President in 2013. It's the highest number since 1940.

So what must we do if we hope to join their ranks? Much of it depends on the genes we inherit, according to a new study. Healthy eating and exercise might help most people live to a respectable old age, but making it to 95 or 100 might require help from our genetics.

The Boston University study looked at thousands of sibling groups in which at least one person reached age 90. For people who lived to age 90, the chances that their siblings also reached 90 was only about 70pc higher than for the average person born around the same time, the study found.

But genetics began to play a bigger role as the number of birthdays came and went. For people who lived to age 95, the chances that their siblings also reached 95 was 3.5 times higher than normal, the study found.

For people who lived to 100, the chances that their siblings also reached 100 was nine times higher than normal.

And for those few people who lived to 105, the chances of their siblings also reaching 105 was a whopping 35 times higher than normal.

Reaching the age of 105 is about 1,000 times rarer than making it to age 95.

The study supports the theory that genes play "a stronger role in living to these more and more extreme ages."

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