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Sip Your Way to Longer Life: 5 Drinks Proven to Promote Longevity

Update Date: May 13, 2013 03:20 PM EDT
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How can we live longer, healthier and happier? Numerous studies have found that long life isn't just about DNA. Time and time again, scientists have proven that people can significantly influence their lifespan by adopting a lifestyle that combines healthy nutrition, exercise, sleep and other health behaviors. Below are a few beverages for you to sip your way to a longer life.

1. Coffee

Not only is coffee a great way to start the day, an increasing number of studies have found that coffee can lower the risk of type 2 diabetes, neurodegenerative diseases, various cancers and a variety of other conditions.  A study published February in the New England Journal of Medicine revealed that the more coffee a person drinks, the less likely he or she will die from heart and respiratory disease, stroke, injuries, accidents and infections.

2. Tea

Tea, especially green tea, has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, and Alzheimer's disease.  Previously Japanese researchers followed people over 40,000 participants for up to 11 years and found that the more tea a person drank, the less likely there were to have died from cardiovascular disease. Researchers found that participants who drank five or more cups of green tea each day were the least likely to die over the course of the study.

3. Red Wine

Previous studies have found that an ingredient in red wine known as resveratrol can make human cells much more resilient to radiation. Other studies have found that the molecule, which can be found in red wine can help fight signs of aging and disease like diabetes, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and various neurodegenerative diseases.  Furthermore, in 2009, Dutch scientists found that drinking up to half a glass of wine a day may boost life expectancy by at least five years in men. 

4. Water

Besides being one of life's necessities, water can also help extend lifespan. Getting enough water, or drinking at least six glasses of water a day, can boost cellular function, metabolism, organ function, and improve longevity. Drinking lots of water helps the body flush out many harmful chemicals and substances that build up in your body over time.  Another indirect benefit of drinking lots of water is that when you drink it, you won't' be drinking other beverages like soda, which are full of harmful sugars.

5. Hot Chocolate

Not only will this hot drink improve your mood, it can also help protect against heart disease. This tasty treat can boost the production of serotonin in the brain, which can help enhance your mood.  Chocolate, especially dark chocolate, is rich in polyphenols, which are plant-derived antioxidants that can protect cells against oxidative damage, lower harmful cholesterol levels and fight against heart disease. Past studies have found that chocolate significantly lowers the risk of high blood pressure and improves the flexibility of blood vessels.  

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