I read an article the other day about ‘The 4 Things That Will Kill You.’ Gee, anyone want to take a stab at what those might be? They’re all bad habits. Now I’ve probably given it away for sure….yep, smoking, drinking too much alcohol, poor diet and inactivity. As for me…well, two out of four ain’t bad.
To be more specific….the risky habits were smoking tobacco, drinking more than three alcoholic drinks per day for men and more than two daily for women; getting less than two hours of physical activity per week; and eating fruits and vegetables less than three times a day.
I’ve never smoked; and that’s amazing for someone who came from a home with two heavy-smoking parents and also marrying a heavy smoker. It just never appealed to me….the taste, the smell; no, I managed to think of a lot better things to put in my mouth.
I’ve never particularly liked drinking alcohol; again, the taste just didn’t appeal to me. I have this gigantic ‘sweet tooth,’ and alcohol never filled that need. Even when I indulged at a party or special event and someone made a sweeter drink for me, I wound up nursing it for the whole evening. Now if there was a plate of cookies or some cake sitting out; that’s another story.
And my second checkmark on this list….inactivity; but this has really only been in the last few years since my addiction to the computer. I know I don’t need to explain that one to any of you. I was pretty active up until I stopped working at my outside job five years ago. I’ve gotten lazy and complacent about some things. I was doing a good job of walking every day for a while until I hurt a muscle in my hip/back about 1 ½ years ago. When my hip was better….I got lazy about walking. I made sure I kept doing the exercises from my therapist every day to keep the muscles in my back limber... especially since I sit so long at this computer; but my walking suffered, and I've never gotten my focus back. I’m hoping to get inspired again and get out there…my body did feel better.
This article went on to say that the findings were from a study that tracked nearly 5,000 British adults for 20 years….20 years, Cripes! 314 people studied had all four unhealthy habits. Among them, 91 died during the study. (Well, if I was being tracked for 20 years about every bad habit I had…I think I could safely add STRESS to the mix….and did anyone take into consideration that ‘it was just their time?’) Among the 387 healthiest people with none of the four habits, only 32 died.
These habits combined greatly increased the risk of death and made people who engaged in them seem 12 years older than people in the healthiest group. (Well, that explains a few things when I look in the mirror.)
The healthiest group included people who never smoked and those who had quit; teetotalers, women who had fewer than two drinks a day and men who had less than three; those who got at least two hours of physical activity weekly; and those who ate fruit and vegetables at least three times a day. (How perfect can anyone expect us to be? I guess they are out there.) They do say you don’t need to be ‘extreme’ to be in the healthy category. (Well, that’s good to know…apparently, I don’t do extremes.)
Oh, and speaking of the #1 bad habit….smoking; I also read an article that Chinese scientists have found a good use for cigarette butts: rustproofing steel. Well, constantly being reminded what it can do to our bodies; we shouldn’t be surprised, should we?
A Chinese scientist and his colleagues used a mixture of butts and distilled water on a type of steel used in oil pipes. The mixture protects the steel from rusting…even under harsh conditions.
Nine chemicals, including nicotine, have an anti-corrosion effect. (Too bad it can’t do something similar for us mere mortals; we could use a little anti-corrosion.)
More than 4 trillion butts that contain toxins that can kill fish and harm the environment are tossed away every year.
I wonder what percentage WE are.