Super Contributor
Posts: 273
Registered: ‎03-11-2010

So often I read comments about health and longevity with the implication that we won’t get sick and  we will live a healthy long life if we just have a positive attitude,  eat healthy and stay active. 


I truly believe that attitude, nutrition, and activity all contribute to a healthy and long life.  But do you think that sometimes it comes across as victim blaming? 


So many things are out of our control:  genetics, accidents, environmental and economic factors to name a few. 


Last month I went on vacation with a friend I hadn’t seen in a while.  We are the same chronological age, but we have aged very differently.  It was eye-opening to see the effects of pollution, poverty, and familial stress, despite her positive attitude, activity level and healthy diet. 


We had a great time, but I was surprised at how asthma, arthritis, osteoporosis, untreated hearing loss, and lingering effects from cancer treatment, combined to make her seem many years older than me.


I am so blessed. 

Honored Contributor
Posts: 14,338
Registered: ‎05-23-2015

You can do everthing right and still have a bad outcome. A smug attitude and lack of empathy for others is as toxic as any illness. 

" You are entitled to your opinion. But you are not entitled to your own facts."
Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,965
Registered: ‎02-07-2011

I'll be 73 next month.  Do not take any meds and although I could lose 20 pounds and have an injured foot, I still can get around fine.  DH will be 77 in a couple of weeks and people are amazed that neither of us takes any drugs. 


IMO it has more to do with genetics than anything.  We do live a pretty stress free life so I think that also helps.  Otherwise we do nothing special as far as exercise or diet.


We are truly blessed!



Super Contributor
Posts: 468
Registered: ‎04-22-2010

I have many friends who have fallen from different conditions and say my prayers that my DH and I have been well.  But you never know what is in store for you.  I have seen friends healthy one minute and the next minute they are in bad condition or passed away.   As we say in church that we all have a marked date on the calendar, just do not know when.  Many blessings to all of the ladies and gentlemen on this site.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,232
Registered: ‎03-11-2010



Sorry about your friend.  I am almost 65 and have a few health issues that cause me to be uncomfortable and sometimes very uncomfortable.  I am so grateful that none of my problems are life threatening.  I do get what you are saying about victim blaming.  One can have the perfect life, access to and the ability to afford great health care, eat healthy all of the time, exercise, etc., but yet stuff happens.  Bad things happen to young people too, that are in great shape. Sometimes it gets on my nerves what people preach, that keep strict lifestyles.  All we can do is the best we can do for ourselves.  Sometimes things are out of our control.





Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,219
Registered: ‎09-07-2014

I think I understand your post @juanitalinda. You never know your mortality. Although I know genetics is a huge part of this, a healthy lifestyle both physically and mentally, can definitely add to your quality of life. I go to a physician that does a 3-day physical annually and a 3 hour extensive interview with the results of these tests. This interview consists of a lengthy discussion of my grandparents, parents and sibling health history. Genetics is a huge part of your health. 


I eat well and exercise daily. I believe that living a healthy lifestyle would at the least, give you a better quality of life. Although it could be shortened by an accident, or genetic issues, at least you felt good going about your daily business.


In addition, I personally believe you need a positive attitude. If you are around somebody that complains consistently, you should probably avoid them. Things as simple as a host that bothers you, just change the channel and think about the money you saved. 


Life is short, take care of yourself and surround yourself with positive people. Appreciate the little things. 



Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,026
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

I used to think genetics was very important, and to a degree I still do.


However, I'm rethinking that these days.


I'm 75 now, born in 1947, and a few years ago I lost a very close friend  also born in 1947. She was 67 when she died, suddenly of a heart problem.  Her parents were still alive, her father went on to live to be 101, and I think her mother is still alive.


This October, I lost another close friend, born in 1947.  Her parents lived well into their 90's.  I think her mother was 96 and her father was 92 when he died.


Both these women took pretty good care of themselves.  One was slightly overweight, at times, but didn't smoke, didn't drink, exercised and went for regular screenings of all types.


The other one drank in moderation, wine with her meals,  but on all other counts took really good care of herself.


Both had families, and lots of interests, and lots of reasons to live.


I think we delude ourselves a lot about just how much is out of our control, how much is fate.  We have to, or else we would be worried all the time.


But really, I feel like most of it is out of my hands, no matter what I do.  I've lost several other women friends over the past 10 years, my exact age, but these last two losses have made me really just try to take each day as a gift, and not take anything for granted.


I don't worry anymore about not eating perfectly or how many "steps" I'm getting in each day.  

Honored Contributor
Posts: 32,374
Registered: ‎05-22-2016

Re: Healthy at 70?

[ Edited ]

Aging is not a disease but it is a risk factor which accelerates the aging process when we get sick. It's a cycle where when we get older we are more susceptible to illness and illness accelerates the aging processes. Can't win for losing.


ETA- ...and it has almost everything to do with the immune system. My rheumatologist once told me that one day it will be realized that nearly all diseases and illnesses happen b/c of failure of the immune system and most all of it will someday be found to be autoimmune related. That's a profound concept but it has a lot of weight.

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,311
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

My daughter's childhood friend is dying of cancer, stage 4 and in hospice.  Saw her yesterday, living with her 96 year old mother and she is not yet 60.

I am 86 and in great health.  I didn't or don't always eat right, but have exercised for 65 years now.  Still do everyday and the Dr. told me that is what has saved me.

We never know.  Just do our best.

This friend never went to Dr. when she found a lump on her breast, four years ago.  Never said anything to anyone, now it's too late.  Important to get your checkups.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,815
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Healthy at 70?

[ Edited ]

A close friend's mother is healthy at 95.  She smoked for many years and never exercised.  

Another  friend's mother died of lung cancer and never smoked.  🤷‍♀️🤷‍♀️🤷‍♀️

I could go on with other examples, but I just try to do my best to eat properly and keep my weight in check and get my exercise.  I try to keep in mind my family history and not do anything to exacerbate it. I sometimes have my doubts if this will save me, but at least I know I tried.

“People do, I don’t.”
Cosmo Kramer