Technology has made many positive changes in our lives. We’re able to do things faster and more efficiently than we were 100 years ago. It’s also made many of us more sedentary. Despite that, life expectancy is going up for many different reasons. These include more education, the development of cell phones and wearables that allow us to track our health statistics, and the fact that we’re getting more sleep now than we did in the past.
You’re More Educated
For a long time it was thought that those with more money lived longer lives, but new research is finding that it’s not wealth that helps people live longer, it’s education. What does education have to do with life expectancy? No one knows exactly, but research shows that people with more education do have higher life expectancies. According to Maryville University, “the life expectancy for men with a bachelor’s degree was 12.9 years higher than those with less education. For women, the life expectancy for bachelor’s degree holders was 10.4 years higher than those without a degree.” One study found that the bulk of the mortality gap can be attributed to illnesses related to smoking, such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis, and also heart disease and other types of cancer. Women and men both benefit from having more education where their health is concerned. Some think that early education helps people begin making wiser lifestyle choices, which can help later in life. For example, some preventable diseases which can reduce life expectancy are found less in those with higher education than those without.
Cellphones and Wearables
Cellphones and wearables have become more popular as ways for people to keep track of their health. Fitness tracker apps on cellphones, and wearable fitness trackers like the Fitbit and Garmin’s various fitness trackers, make it easier for people to count their steps, keep track of the calories they’ve burned, and the number of hours they’ve slept every night. This data helps people make adjustments to their lives so they can improve their health. AI are able to use the data to predict issues in health and wellness.
You’re Getting More Sleep
People today are sleeping more than they have before. One study reporting that millennials in particular are sleeping an average of 25 minutes longer. Some point to the reason for this change is because millennials are prioritizing personal health and work/life balance more than generations that have come before. And all that extra sleep is helping! According to The National Sleep Foundation, “research shows that the ideal amount of sleep to get every night is seven hours. People who sleep more than 8 hours or less than 4 hours died earlier than those who slept somewhere in between that gap.” Sleeping the right amount of time has other benefits. It can help improve creativity, attention span, and lower your stress level.
These are just a few reasons you’re probably going to live longer. When looking at your life expectancy, also look at other factors that may affect it, like how long different members of your family lived, and diseases they had that you may be at risk for. Then, figure out what you need to do to lower your risk of getting those diseases and increase your life expectancy.
There are more ways than ever do more with less. From helpful hacks and DIYs, to seemingly never ending ways to change our diets, exercise, and more, this is truly a wonderful time to be alive.