Nobody looks forward to the end of their lives, but everybody has to go sometime. However, longevity isn’t something you just have to hope for. You can actively work to live a long and happy life.

Various organizations have conducted countless studies on the best ways to live long and stay healthy. There are many things you can do to live the good life for as long as possible-you can start by focusing on your physical and mental health and avoiding careless accidents.

Physical Health

Keeping your body strong and nimble is critical for living a long life. Here are a few things you can do to keep everything in good working order.

Exercise

Almost any kind will do. Exercise helps you maintain a healthy weight, strengthens your bones, and stimulates endorphins that make you feel happy. You’ll also have more energy and feel less stressed.

Lose Weight

Obesity is strongly associated with an increased risk for a whole host of diseases that can kill you, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • High blood pressure
  • Cancer

You don’t have to live off just carrots and kale, but even a moderate weight loss can seriously improve your health and add years to your life.

Eat Fruits and Vegetables

Speaking of kale, fill up every day on lots of fruits and vegetables. Fresh produce contains a myriad of helpful compounds that keep you healthy and can even reduce your risk of diseases like cancer.

Have Good Hygiene

Washing your hands often and well is the best way to prevent illness. Especially as you get older, it’s easier to get sick with things like pneumonia and the flu. For some people, these things can quickly turn dangerous. You can help keep yourself healthy with good hand hygiene.

Know Your Numbers

Don’t skip your physical. Preventive visits with your doctor are important. You should also know your numbers for basic tests such as blood glucose and cholesterol. These things can help you catch problems early when they’re easier to fix.

You should also check your blood pressure regularly. Seek treatment right away if your blood pressure reaches over 130/85.

Mental Health

It’s a simple fact that happy people live longer. Your mental health can actually impact your physical health, so it’s important to make sure your mind is in just as good of health as your body.

Be Optimistic

Positive people are healthier and live longer. This happens because maintaining an optimistic attitude keeps you more relaxed and less stressed. This means you’ll also have lower blood pressure and a reduced risk of cardiac disease.

Get a Pet

People who have pets, especially dogs, are often happier than those who don’t. Companion animals can have a positive effect on your life. Dogs can also encourage you to be more active.

Laugh

Laughter reduces stress, lowers blood pressure, and stimulates endorphins. People who laugh more are usually happier and don’t get angry as often.

Find a Purpose

Especially after retirement, people who feel they have a sense of direction have a longer lifespan.

However, you don’t have to wait until you’re 67 to find your purpose in life. A sense of direction is helpful for younger people as well and can increase longevity down the line.

Spend Time with Family and Friends

Your relationships with other people are the most important aspect of your life. Nothing else is as important as maintaining positive relationships with your families and friends.

Good relationships make you feel less stressed and give you support networks during hard times. Have close friends and family that you can speak to openly and without fear of judgment.

Dangerous Accidents

If you have a sound mind and body, then an accident is the only other thing that can kill you. Some incidents just can’t be avoided. However, there are many ways you can work to keep yourself safe and uninjured in your daily life.

Drive Carefully

Driving is the most dangerous thing you do every day. Accidents are the leading cause of death for people under the age of 25. And most of these accidents are car crashes.

The best way to protect yourself is to be a defensive driver. Don’t put yourself in danger, and watch out for other drivers who may pose a threat.

Wear a Helmet

If you choose to ride a motorcycle or bicycle, a helmet is critical. Head injuries are extremely common in bike crashes, and you only have one brain-so don’t let an accident ruin it!

Be Conscientious

Be aware of your surroundings, and recognize when you enter a potentially dangerous situation. If you try to fix a broken electrical socket and think you lack the skill for the job, stop and call a professional. If you think that ladder looks unsteady, it probably is.

Accidents will happen no matter what you do, but by being cautious you can try to avoid the worst of them.

Life is not always in your control. However, longevity isn’t entirely a matter of chance. There are things you can do in your daily life to hold onto your health and happiness well into your golden years.