Secrets to living a longer life

About the book, Happy to 102: The Best Kept Secrets to a Long and Happy Life:
We are living longer than ever. Centenarians are the fastest growing segment of our population. Before we know it, 102 just may become the new 75. As we live longer, though, we want to enjoy improved health-span alongside increased lifespan. Happy to 102 lays out all those factors diet, exercise, sociability, mental challenge, sense of purpose that make the difference not only in how long we live but in how well we live. Based on groundbreaking scientific research of the longest living people on Earth, Happy to 102 spells out precisely what it takes to delay or escape Alzheimer's and other chronic diseases, slow down the process of aging and enjoy better health in our senior years. With an emphasis on aging in place with in-home care, Happy to 102 unlocks the secrets to longevity and inspires us to live happier, healthier lives at any age.
>> Buy the book on Amazon: Happy to 102: The Best Kept Secrets to a Long and Happy Life

The book highlights 102 ways to live happy & healthy to 102. Here are some:


Eat less and live longer. Keep the 80 percent rule in mind, essentially not eating any more after you feel 80 percent full.

Limit alcohol consumption, since it can adversely affect alertness and coordination.

Spice it up with high-antioxidant spices and herbs such as cinnamon, ginger, curry, rosemary, thyme, oregano and red pepper.

Eat all natural. Avoid high-calorie foods full of sugar, fat and artificial ingredients and concentrate on eating high-nutrient, high-flavor foods such as fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices.

Eat "Brain food." Keep your mind sharp by eating salmon, nuts, olive oil, soy, meat, eggs, dairy, leafy greens, beans, oatmeal and dark skinned fruits.


Remain physically active to improve balance, flexibility and strength, alleviate stress and depression, increase alertness and strengthen the heart and circulatory system.

Keep it simple. Even simple exercises such as stretching while in bed can improve the ability to stand, walk and even improve the reflexes needed to arrest impending falls.

Count every step. Wear a step counter throughout the day to count how many steps you take. One study showed that pedometer users increase their physical activity by 26.9 percent.

Take the stairs. Rosemond Borboa, age 82, resident of Wyndham Retirement Center in Fresno, California says, "I eat three good meals a day and haven't gained any weight because I take the stairs."

Stretch. A simple stretch involves bending your head to your shoulder holding it there and slowly bringing it back to the center and then switching sides.


Memorize phone numbers, names and word spellings.

Train your brain. Working a daily crossword, Sudoku puzzle or another brain teasing game will improve your mental fitness. Even simple arithmetic problems can keep you sharp.

A word a day. Learn a new word each day and use it in conversation. Visit or have your caregiver visit websites like for your daily word.

Travel. Join a senior elder hostel group and travel to local sights or travel the world for fun and mental stimulation. Take a caregiver for peace of mind.

Music therapy. Music can regulate mood, decrease aggression and depression, improve sleep and even create new brain cells.


Be tech savvy. Stay connected by email and get involved in forums and chat rooms that interest you. Follow popular home care blogs like the one on

Volunteer. According to the AARP Bulletin, volunteering is good for brain health and gives you the opportunity to use your skills to contribute to the good of your community.

Participate in arts and crafts with others, such as sewing circles or pottery classes.

Join bridge clubs, reading groups or other regular gatherings to establish a routine. Mental stimulation and social interaction combined is doubly beneficial!

Take trips to the salon to have hair and nails done.


Humor your stress. Laughing improves circulation, lowers blood pressure, releases tension and improves your immune system.

Think positive. If you can't change the situation, change the way you think about it.

Let nature take your stress away. Simply being outdoors with green plants, fresh air and the sounds of nature is a proven stress buster.

Begin with breathing. Consciously focusing on your breath keeps you in the moment.

Aromatherapy. Try lavender, lemongrass, cinnamon or cedarwood.

About the authors:
Kathy N. Johnson, PhD, CMC is a Certified Geriatric Care Manager serving the San Francisco Bay Area. She holds a Doctorate in Psychology from the Illinois Institute of Technology.

James H. Johnson, PhD is a licensed clinical psychologist and the award-winning author of seven books. A former university professor and department chair, he holds a Doctorate in Psychology from the University of Minnesota.

Lily Sarafan, MS is a corporate executive and advocate for aging in place. She holds Masters and Bachelors degrees from Stanford University.

Web resources:
>> -- outlines an exclusive caregiver training system that, like the book, focuses on healthy longevity.

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